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The Official Site of the Edmonton Oilers

One Hall of a Story, Part 2

Cam Tait continues his three-part series on the Oilers Hall of Fame with Dwain Tomkow, Oilers Manager of Game-Used Inventory

by Cam Tait @camtait / EdmontonOilers.com

It's something Dwain will do countless times over the years, but chances are he'll never forget his first tour of the Oilers Hall of Fame room.

A half hour before the Hall of Fame was officially opened to the media on Wednesday, October 12, Dwain walked into the quiet room with a special guest: Wayne Gretzky. 

The two took their time looking at the different displays - Oilers jerseys, hockey sticks, pucks and trophies - and Wayne had a few hearty chuckles.

"Being able to give Wayne an unexpected pre-tour of the Hall of Fame was certainly a highlight for me and my work on the project," said Dwain. "The opportunity to show your childhood idol some of his old game worn items and other historical artifacts from Oilers history was simply incredible. Seeing the excitement on his face when he looked at the puck wall and the memories it brought back showed me how truly special this space will be for all that visit."

According to Dwain, there are many great things to see, thanks to a unique partnership with the Hockey Hall of Fame (HHOF) in Toronto. One of the many highlights includes an exact replica of the Legends Wall featuring Oilers Hall of Fame members Gretzky, Mark Messier, Jari Kurri, Glenn Anderson, Paul Coffey and Grant Fuhr.

Dwain says it is extra special in Edmonton.

"This is the first time the HHOF has ever authorized reproductions to be made for display outside of the HHOF in Toronto," he said.

"The Hockey Hall of Fame Oilers Legends exhibit and all the natural lighting in the room really reminds us of the 'Great Hall' room in Toronto where the actual player plaques and Stanley Cups reside. I think our legends wall and the reproduction Stanley Cups representing each of the Oilers five championships to date really sets us apart from any other team museum or shrine."

In addition to the reproductions, Dwain says there are many other historic artifacts in the room: Al Hamilton's first jersey he wore as a member of the World Hockey Association's (WHA) Alberta Oilers from 1972; Wayne Gretzky's rookie jersey and that oh-so-colourful Grant Fuhr goalie mask.

One wall features a puck collection from former Oilers President, General Manager and Coach Glen Sather.

Another interesting concept of the room, according to Dwain, is how it will be interchangeable. 

"The artifacts within the Hall of Fame will change as we look to switch out and add new or different items of significant historical value in the years ahead. That's something Barrie mentioned to me once and his words stuck.

"And there are more cool historical items to come just around the corner once we introduce new portable displays that will feature items from early Edmonton hockey history, the WHA, Team Canada participants from the team and the Edmonton Oil Kings."

So stay tuned.

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