Hockey Hall of Fame - Stanley Cup Journals: 2011, 31

Tim Thomas being honoured at Davison High School in Michigan.
Tim Thomas being honoured at Davison High School in Michigan. (Howie Borrow/Hockey Hall of Fame)
So…how does a Stanley Cup champion spend his day with the Stanley Cup after he's been named most valuable player in the playoffs as well as the best goalie in the league? Well, he goes out and enters a home run derby in his hometown. Wouldn't you?

That is exactly what Tim Thomas did in the tiny town of Otisville, just outside his hometown of Davison, Michigan on August 24. In fact, the NHL's Conn Smythe winner had more big hits than Lady Gaga and took the home run derby into overtime before finally settling for second place.

Throughout his day, Davison honoured Tim in some very special ways. A bridge was named after Tim. In addition, thousands of fans showed up at Davison High School to see him and the Cup. Tim, who was known as 'The Tank' when he played football at Davison, was an all-around athlete as a teenager. Curiously, the town of 5,500 residents has already had a Stanley Cup champion from Davison High School. Former Olympic Gold Medalist and four-time Stanley Cup champion Ken Morrow is also an alumnus. Tim's achievements will be posted alongside Ken's on a sign near the school.

Tim Thomas and his wife Melissa sharing a moment with the Stanley Cup, Vezina and Conn Smythe trophies.
Tim Thomas and his wife Melissa sharing a moment with the Stanley Cup, Vezina and
Conn Smythe trophies.
(Howie Borrow/Hockey Hall of Fame)
Before heading off for the batting competition in Otisville, family and friends gathered for a barbecue with Tim. When he returned, Tim and some of his closest friends sat around a bonfire with the Stanley Cup, reliving the past glories.

But the celebration didn't end there. On Saturday, September 3, Thomas took the Stanley Cup back to Burlington, Vermont, where he attended college.

The day began with a large parade through the streets of Burlington, with Tim, his wife Melissa (who Tim met at the school) and their children waving to the thousands of fans who lined the parade route. The procession concluded with Tim being presented with the United States and Green Mountain battle flags by the Vermont National Guard. These flags flew over Afghanistan on the day the Bruins won the Stanley Cup.

Then, it was over to the University of Vermont for further celebrations, where Thomas was honoured by the UVM Alumni Association and presented with the 2011 Alumni Achievement Award. While there, Tim reminisced about his years as a Catamount.

Tim Thomas posing for some photos with his hardware on Lake Champlain.
Tim Thomas posing for some photos with his hardware on Lake Champlain. (Walt Neubrand/Hockey Hall of Fame)
He attended the school and played hockey there between 1993 and 1997. During that time, the Bruins' netminder and forward Martin St. Louis were part of a team that in 1996 took the University of Vermont to the NCAA's Final Four.

A day in Burlington isn't complete without a stop at Al's Ice Cream, where hundreds of customers were pleasantly shocked when Tim waltzed into the local establishment with the Stanley Cup hoisted proudly over his shoulders.

After a couple of hours at the family cottage on beautiful Lake Champlain, Tim was the guest of honour at a private party for friends, family, food and photos.

As the day ended and the Stanley Cup, the Conn Smythe and the Vezina Trophy were packed away, Tim reflected on his special time with the Cup. He mused that he wouldn't have changed a single thing...except maybe winning the home run derby!

Tim Thomas walking through the streets of Burlington, Vermont with the Stanley Cup.
Tim Thomas walking through the streets of Burlington, Vermont with the Stanley Cup. (Phil Pritchard/Hockey Hall of Fame)

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On Tuesday, carve out some time for the Stanley Cup Journal to find out about what goes on when the Stanley Cup is engraved.

Kevin Shea is the Editor of Publications and Online Features for the Hockey Hall of Fame.

All Photographs are property of the Hockey Hall of Fame or Getty Images and may not be reproduced without prior written consent. For more information regarding use of our photographs please contact us.
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