Well Beauties, the first annual installment of GONGERFEST has come and gone but I am sure some of you are still feeling pretty hung from the gongshow that was Saturday night at the Cabin Ottawa. While two day hangovers are uncommon for those accustomed to the hockey life, it comes as no surprise that if it was going to happen it would be because the Gongshow Gear boys know how to throw one hell of a party! I for one had a very miserable, slightly intoxicated, incredibly long flight back to the US at 6 AM following Gongerfest so trust me, we all paid the price for playing hard but at least we weren’t alone.
As I walked through Gongerfest on Saturday night I couldn’t help but feel like it was a family affair. Gongers everywhere in Gongshow lids and shirts, beauty bands and belts representing the family we have all become a part of and that we obviously all love. This blog is pretty much just a recap of everything fun and noteworthy that came from Gongerfest not just for those who weren’t there, but also for those who were and might be a bit fuzzy on what actually happened that night…the pictures speak for themselves, some of you beauts were definitely in black out territory by the night’s end haha! So here we go crew, Gongerfest 2012…as clearly as I can remember it anyway!
Saturday morning with a slight hangover courtesy of the one and only @GongshowDuncs and @WhiskeyBarOtt, I headed out into Ottawa with the lovely and talented Kat P. who writes all of the awesome “Gongers with Guitars” articles here on Gongshow. We were really just in search for coffee and food but ended up making an early stop by the Gongshow Sample Sale set up at the Cabin. It was obvious that the night was going to be a success based solely on the amount of gongers lined up for gear at the outdoor tent. We stopped and took a look at the stage and met with the boys before deciding we were going to need to eat if we were going to make it any farther into our day without feeling awful. We weren’t the only ones attempting to regroup for the night as coffee and advil seemed to be a common theme around the Cabin. Luckily we all seemed to be surviving and went on with our day.
Kat and I went back to our beautiful accomodations at the Fairmont Chateau Laurier, which made us feel like absolute princesses mind you, and got ready for a night to remember…or not remember but know we had a really really good time at! All kidding aside, we stopped by Cornerstone for some pre-gongerfest dinner with friends where we spotted others in their Gongshow finest. We opted for cute dresses but I think everyone here knows I own pretty much own the entire Gongshow catalog at this point! Anyway, so we went over to the Cabin where Ger handed us our VIP lanyards so we could move through the crowd and get all of you guys to pose for us for pics and share some stories with us! We got right to work and every gonger we spoke to was not only awesome, but also incredibly nice!
We met gongers from virtually every league you can think of, gongers who just love the sport, and of course a lot of girls who were absolute rockets! We heard about playing at University, playing in house leagues, playing in semi-pro leagues, playing in the Show, and general stories of just being beauties. We had the honor of getting to know Marc Methot, now of the Ottawa Senators, as he joined the boys in the VIP and presented Aaron Pritchett with a Sens sweater during his concert! Of course you all know that not only did Rory Gardiner play a great set, he also warmed everybody up with some classic bar favorites we all got to sing along to! This is where the night starts getting fuzzy for some of the gongers in attendance…don’t lie, I saw how much beer was going down boys haha!
Anyway, so Rory got everybody nice and fired up and then it was time to hear Aaron Pritchett play! From the first song Aaron was on fire! He was all over the stage and interacted with the crowd! I think he knew he was going to have to play his heart out for the crowd and he surely did! We all danced and sang along and had a genuinely great time during his performance! He was so nice after and signed autographs for everyone who asked and was incredibly fun to talk to!
Throughout the night we tracked the beautiful Gongshow girls handing out free gear and it was no surprise they were incredibly popular given the fact that not only were they super sweet, they were also all total smoke shows! I must say, the boys at this party were all very lucky to be there! We went back into the VIP area to regroup and chill for a bit, and ended up getting to meet Gongshow President Ger McNamee’s wonderful parents who were also there to celebrate ten years of Gongshow with their son! The pride they have in him is something we should all desire from our folks, and as Ger and his Dad raised the Stanley Cup Keg together for a picture, I couldn’t help but feel that we really are all part of one big amazing family!
The rest of the evening for us was spent meeting new friends and twitter followers we’ve been interacting with for some time but have never met in person, and I have to say, I was incredibly impressed with each new person who crossed my path! Gongshow’s bloggers were well represented and I finally got to meet the incredibly sweet @Hockey_Foxx and friends! I had the privilege of finally meeting all of the boys who brought Gongshow Gear to life ten years ago and they couldn’t be a better group of guys. I also got to meet Aaron, Rory, and David Pagnotta from The Fourth Period Magazine, which as a hockey writer was kind of a big deal! I say kind of…but what I really mean is, it was a big frickin deal…unfortunately I was pretty much as drunk as most of the other beauties there at that point courtesy of a gonger who insisted we all have cold beers in our hands at all times; I wasn’t gonna complain and I certainly was not going to turn down beer, so my plan to stay slightly buzzed and not drunk went out the window after about an hour into Gongerfest…which was probably longer than most people there! Regardless, I think we all understood that Gongerfest wouldn’t be Gongerfest without a certain level of partying involved! We all had a great time though and I was perfectly ok with flying a little bit drunk because I left Ottawa with some amazing memories and even more amazing new friends courtesy of Gongshow.
Since Saturday I have heard some pretty crazy stories on how the night went for others. Popular themes of the night were gongers wheeling broads with the oh so popular “Hey babe I played in the O” line and subsequently being busted for that not necessarily being true in every case…I mean come on lads, these girls know their hockey and elite prospects and hockeydb work on iphones….but props for trying haha! We had drunk dancing gongers, drunk singing gongers, drunk wheeling gongers, very friendly drunk gongers, touchy feely drunk gongers, puking gongers, passed out gongers, but most importantly, THE BEST GONGERS out there!
As I packed the last of my stuff at 4 AM before heading to the airport I looked at Kat and just smiled. We were both about to leave Ottawa with a night we wouldn’t soon forget fresh in our minds and stories we’ll keep with us for a lifetime. I would like to personally thank everyone who came out to not only show their support for Gongshow Gear and the boys, but also who came to celebrate the brand and the family! We truly appreciate each and every one of you! Thanks for all of the stories ya beauts! I’m sure we’ll be interviewing some of you throughout the next season and we hope to see even more of you next year at the 2nd annual Gongerfest!
W.S.P. Gongers and I hope you all have some great Gongerfest memories as well!
Stay tuned as I finally get around to writing about the rest of my crazy Canadian adventure! Also, as we move closer to season look for exclusive interviews with players from every level of hockey! It’s gonna be a great year Gongers!
And no worries, I’ll submit a full blog of JUST PICTURES for you this week! Just give me some time Gongers!