A Hoser’s Review of the 105th Grey Cup

Those of you against moving the season up a month earlier obviously weren’t there.

My review in four words: You nailed it Ottawa!

Commissioner’s Address (2/5)

I’ve never thought much about how hard it must be listening to all the idiots in a crowd.

I have been to a few of these now and it’s starting to seem like the same questions keep getting asked by fans year after year. Some of them really can’t get to the point because they don’t have one.  Half the time their thought train tumbles off the tracks and whatever comment stumbling through their flapping gums ends in an incoherent ramble.

They gave out 105th Grey Cup coins at the end, so I guess it was worth it.  I’ll probably skip next year’s and grab the extra sleep instead.

Touchdown Manitoba (3/5)

A beer with Coach O’Shea! Absolute class! Does it get any better than that at a Grey Cup party?

You know how I feel about beer, so when I have to wait 52 minutes in line to purchase one the reviews aren’t going to be kind. The Shaw Centre disastrously underestimated the thirst of the CFL’s most loyal and charged us $9 per bottle of beer when we could get it.  Eventually they brought out a couple of more bars to meet demand but the damage had been done. Also, Where the hell was the silent auction this year?

That said, the Bombers did recognize their catastrophe and emailed gift cards to the Blue Bomber Store valued at the party’s price ($25).  Along with that came an apology from Wade Miller himself.  Accepted.

Stanley Bryant, Matt Nichols and Andrew Harris were on hand for autographs and pictures, then stayed to shut the party down!  I had a great chat with them too.  That’s the kind of thing you won’t get in any other league!

Atlantic Schooner’s Down East Kitchen Party (4/5)

So well attended compared to 104 that they actually ran out of beer.

This lived up to its reputation. Unfortunately, I had to take a point off because beer was $9 for a baby can, which they ran out of halfway into Friday night.  The rest of it was spot on, including the lobster rolls and the Mud Men (playing above).

Spirit of Edmonton (3/5)

Asleep beside the dueling pianos — it’s always someone’s first Grey Cup.

Edmonton changed things up by hosting their shaker inside a bi-level brewery. On paper it was a good idea but in practice it just wasn’t the same party we were all expecting. There wasn’t a lot of mingling and it was jammed tighter than a bail of prairie hay.  I heard the same opinion about Spirit from others around the festival.  Go back to what works Edmonton.

Street Party (5/5)

You had to run this gauntlet on the way to the tail gate.

Regrettably, I didn’t get to spend too much time here.  It looked like the best Grey Cup Street Party thus far. They had a stage with live bands and a very large beer garden. I was very impressed with that. The booths and such looked as pedestrian as years past, but the effort put into this was impressive.

Tail Gate Party (4/5)

Largest tail gate in Grey Cup history? I’d wager so.

This was pretty well thought out. It was held in a field of mud but what can you do this time of year? If you were drinking cocktails, the lines were intolerable.  Also, there should have been an entire row of food trucks instead of the two that showed up. However, overall this would be a nice tradition to continue.

The Game (5/5)

“A dusting of snow” my gold ass!

You watched the game so I’m not going to review the quality of play, just the important bits about consuming beer and processing it out.

A host city FINALLY did it right. Extra porta-pots and extra beer vendors! WHY has it taken so long to figure this out? I never had to wait more than a minute to drain the main vein and I bought most of my beer from the comfort of my seat. Progress!

Are you @#$%ing reading this Edmonton?!

Where Does the 105h Grey Cup Rank?

I had to see what’s going to be like when the Bombers win the 106th Grey Cup.

I can’t stress enough what a great job the City of Ottawa did pulling off the 105th.  I will certainly wager on a re-hosting before nine years are up.  This may be the best organized Grey Cup out of the twelve I’ve seen but, sorry Ottawa, I still have to rank it second behind the 100th.

Hey Edmonton!  The bar’s been raised!

Now, is it June yet?

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