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BLOG: Excitement on Churchill Square

by Kelli Gustafson / Edmonton Oilers

“It’s a really good day to be the Mayor of Edmonton,” Don Iveson beamed, as he addressed the crowd at Churchill Square earlier this afternoon.

Nearly 100 Oilers alumni joined the Farewell Rexall Place celebrations beginning at City Hall, where they were recognized and applauded by thousands of cheering fans.

The pavement of Churchill Square could barely be recognized, as fans flooded the area in orange, blue, and white, with the hopes to catch a glimpse of some of their hockey heroes.

“It felt almost like a Stanley Cup parade,” Georges Laraque commented on the excitement, “This shows why we have the best fans in the world.”

Mark Messier agreed, “This looks familiar to 1984.”

“I remember coming to city hall and having the big gathering here, and thanking the fans, and here we are again in another big crowd — wow, what a powerful day today for so many people in the organization, in the city, and obviously the players.”

Ryan Smyth also addressed the crowd after receiving an extensive applause.

“It’s a bittersweet day… there’s a lot of memories, a lot of history in that building. But, in the same breath, there’s another one just a few blocks around the corner here, that many new memories are going to be made in.”

“Thank you to the fans, the media and the City of Edmonton.”

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