Hockey Hall of Fame - Stanley Cup Journals: 26
The Stanley Cup Journal

New Glasgow, Nova Scotia honoured their local hockey hero with a parade through the streets of their town.
New Glasgow, Nova Scotia honoured their local hockey hero with a parade through the streets of their town.
(August 6, 2003) — A visit from the Stanley Cup is a rare and momentous occasion. There are communities that will likely never see the Stanley Cup any time in the near future. But the town of New Glasgow on Nova Scotia's beautiful Northumberland Shore had its third visit from the gleaming, silver trophy when it arrived as a special guest of New Jersey's defensive rock, Colin White, on Monday, July 28.

The Stanley Cup flew into Halifax earlier in the day, and Colin was there, anxious to collect hockey's greatest prize. They made the trip from the airport to New Glasgow, following the winding road that has witnessed some of Canada's earliest history. New Glasgow has been an important home to shipbuilding since 1840, but today, is as well known for its production of hockey players. Lowell MacDonald, whose career traces back to the Original Six era, was the first New Glasgow talent to crack an NHL lineup when he debuted as a Detroit Red Wing during the 1961-62 season. MacDonald went on to win the Masterton Trophy in 1973 for perseverance and dedication to hockey. Jon Sim brought the Stanley Cup home to New Glasgow in 1999 after his Dallas Stars captured the big prize. Then, Colin White went to town. The hulking 6'4" White swooped into New Glasgow with the Stanley Cup during the summer of 2000 and returned again three years later.

It had been a long day already. Colin glanced up after the ninety-minute drive and noted, "Here we are," and pointed out the town's tartan decorating the George Street Bridge. After arriving, Colin and his friends hung out in the basement of his home, playing euchre, with the Stanley Cup nearby. It was a relaxing start to the Cup's visit to New Glasgow, but the next day was jam-packed with scheduled activities. The boys finally turned the lights out at two in the morning to get some rest.

The alarm went off at 7:30 Tuesday (July 29). After getting ready, a limousine took Colin and the Stanley Cup to the arena that had seen his earliest hockey forays - New Glasgow Stadium. There, he met up with a number of pals, including two who also play in the NHL - Derrick Walser, who played his rookie season last year with the Columbus Blue Jackets, and the afore-mentioned Jon Sim, whose 2002-03 NHL season included stops in Dallas, Nashville and Los Angeles. Along with several other friends, Colin set up a ball hockey tournament. It was a best-of-three affair, with the winning team getting the bragging rights and the chance to pose with the Stanley Cup, while the losing team had to take the picture. Appropriately, Colin's team won the mini-tournament, and he and the boys crowded around their prize for a photo.

The Stanley Cup made a visit to the New Glasgow Police Department, where officers and their families took photographs with the Cup and got Colin to sign pictures to commemorate a great day.

A blur of kids from local minor hockey organizations lined the streets of New Glasgow wearing their sweaters as a show of pride towards Colin White.
A blur of kids from local minor hockey organizations lined the streets of New Glasgow wearing their sweaters as a show of pride towards Colin White.
At 3:00PM, the Town of New Glasgow opened its arms and welcomed the triumphant return of native son, Colin White, with a parade through the town. It began at the New Glasgow Stadium, with the skirl of the pipes from the Fraser Holmes Ladies Memorial Pipe Band leading the way. Colin, his wife Amy and their little girl, Jordyn, rode in a classic 1957 Ford Fairlane convertible with the Stanley Cup following closely behind in a 1935 Auburn. Following the guests of honour were minor hockey teams from across Pictou County. Many wore their own sweaters as a show of pride, but a number of Devils' jerseys with White's Number 5 also paraded along the route. The streets were lined with fans, many holding signs. "Man, some of these folks drove in from New Brunswick," Colin noted, then, caught by the sight of one special sign, added, "Lord, those folks are in from Newfoundland!" All along the parade route, businesses and residences displayed signs congratulating Colin White and the New Jersey Devils on their Stanley Cup victory. The entourage stopped briefly in front of Town Hall, a gorgeous example of nineteenth century architecture, and Mayor Ann MacLean greeted Colin, Amy, Jordyn and Stanley. "We're so proud of him," Her Worship said. "Colin had an excellent series and he played so well!" Colin was clearly overwhelmed by the attention. "You never get used to it," said the star defenseman.

Colin and Amy White hosted a Stanley Cup party for family and friends at their new home in New Glasgow.
Colin and Amy White hosted a Stanley Cup party for family and friends at their new home in New Glasgow.
In 2000 when the Devils won the Cup, Colin returned home to New Glasgow, a town of 10,000 residents, and stayed with his parents, although he married Amy later that summer. This time, the couple has their own home, and it hosted a party for more than a hundred friends and family after the parade concluded. The Stanley Cup sat by the pool as the party built momentum. Champagne spilled from the bowl of the Cup into the anxious mouths of Colin's guests. But at nine o'clock, the party wrapped up. Colin had additional business to attend to - he was taking the Stanley Cup to the streets of New Glasgow. Colin and his buddies took the Cup to some of the drinking establishments around town. Colin's friends were so excited, you'd be hard-pressed to decide who it was who had actually won the Cup. Unlike many NHLers, Derrick Walser showed no superstitions about carrying the Stanley Cup before he had actually won it. And Colin's friend Mark was more than eager to show the Stanley Cup to New Glasgow hockey fans. Everywhere they went, people saluted Colin White and the Stanley Cup. "Way to go, Whitey," they'd holler as they leaned on their car horns. Colin and his friend Mark decided to stop for something to eat and pulled into a McDonald's drive-through. The line-up came to a full stop as the staff peeked through the drive-through window to get a look at the Stanley Cup. "Come on, let's go," yelled a guy several cars back in the lineup. "I haven't got all night!" Colin wheeled around and held the Cup. "Dude! I'm sorry," the guy replied. "I had no idea it was the Stanley Cup. Stay as long as you want!"

During the Stanley Cup final between the Devils and the Ducks, the Nova Scotia towns of New Glasgow and Antigonish made a friendly wager. Anaheim's assistant coach, Paul MacLean, hails from Antigonish, and that town's Deputy Warden, Colin Chisholm, made a bet with New Glasgow councillor Dan MacLeod. If Paul MacLean and the Mighty Ducks won the Stanley Cup, New Glasgow had to fly the Antigonish flag for a day. But if New Glasgow's Colin White and his New Jersey Devils won the championship, Antigonish had to fly the New Glasgow flag.

New Glasgow's town flag proudly waved in the breeze over the Town of Antigonish…thanks to Colin White.

On Friday, the Stanley Cup Journal covers New Jersey rookie Jiri Bicek on his day with the Stanley Cup.

Kevin Shea is a hockey journalist and historian living in Toronto.

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