(Edmonton, AB) - The Edmonton Oilers honoured the 125th anniversary of Edmonton Police Service (EPS) at Rogers Place tonight during a pre-game ceremony before the Oilers faced off against the New York Islanders.
Ford Hall was decked out with EPS 125 pageantry for fans to interact with and enjoy before entering the arena. Two EPS vehicles were on display-a vintage 1957 police wagon and brand new 2017 Ford Explorer Police Interceptor-for fans to capture photos with, along with a classic yellow police cruiser from the 1980s on display outside on 104 Ave. Ford Hall also played host to numerous mannequins displaying the evolution of EPS uniforms, short EPS Pipes and Drums performances and EPS informational comic books that were handed out to guests, which provided fans with the history of 125 years of the Edmonton Police Service. A historical EPS unit member was even at the intersection of 104 Ave and 102 St in a traditional buffalo coat and fur hat operating a manually-controlled traffic control device from the 1920s!
"First off, I would like to express how proud the Edmonton Oilers are to honour EPS 125 tonight at Rogers Place," said Oilers Entertainment Group (OEG) Vice Chair, Kevin Lowe. "EPS is a pillar of the Edmonton community and allowing our fans to interact and fully understand the exceptional service these men and woman provide all of us is very important to myself and all the staff at OEG."
The pre-game ceremony kicked off with a vibrant on-ice EPS 125 projection display, followed by a commanding performance by the EPS Pipes and Drums and ended with a ceremonial puck drop featuring two members from the Kids With Cancer Society, Lalla-Rita Hachim and Oaklin Litchfield along with Chief Rod Knecht. Hachim and Litchfield were special participants in the EPS' Chief for a Day event back in May 2015, and were decked out in their EPS Chief's uniforms.
"Part of our 125-year celebrations include reflecting on the tremendous support of our community, which has helped build the Edmonton Police Service into what it is today. We are proud to serve this city, and we're both humbled and grateful for the recognition we are receiving from the Edmonton Oilers tonight," said Chief Rod Knecht.
The Edmonton Oilers were proud to provide the recognition that 125 years of Edmonton Police Service deserves, and were privileged to bring an increasing awareness to the community and fans about the honourable service that EPS has provided Edmontonians in the past, present and future.