The Minnesota Old Timers Hockey Association was founded in 1980's by founder Jack Berres, whom was a well-known figure in the St. Paul hockey community, and played goaltender for a number of local MN teams, such as the St. Paul Saints, the Rochester Mustangs, Koppy Motors and O'Gara's Bar. In 26 years as a goalie, Berres never wore a mask but looked more like "a retired librarian or an accountant". "I got hit, I got cut, I got stitches, and I know what the puck and a skate blade taste like, should I look worse?". [Berres quote in 1995] Jack, was instrumental in starting the association, and the group became a benefactor of the Mariucci Lodge at Confidence Learning Center on Lake Sylvan near Brainerd, MN. Jack Berres also served as a volunteer at the Minnesota Wild alumni room before he passed away from cancer in October 19, 2005. Since the associations first ever inaugural "roast" on March 24, 1987, the association has grown in numbers, and participation now 30+ years old.
Beginning in 1979, the inaugural roasts were sponsored by the Minnesota Minute Men - who sponsors the Mr. and Ms. Hockey Award today. The annual roast tradition, hosted by the Old Timers Association began in 1987*. Annually, this non-profit group consisting of older Minnesota coaches, players, writers, fans, management, and U.S./NHL Hockey Hall of Fame inductees roast & toast a legendary Minnesota hockey alumni, into the now legendary Old Timers Hockey Association. Over the years, the association has held the infamous 'roasts' at various Moose Lodges, Lions Hall and Maplewood Prom and Envision Center to honour a Minnesota hockey faithful. Whatever the location, the roasts have drawn quite the crowd, and is now legendary to be inducted into this small Minnesota Hockey 'fraternity' of faithful roaster(s) that are inducted. Dick "The Polish Eagle" Jonckowski has been long-time emcee of the programs induction ceremony events. The hockey old timers have a purpose beyond getting together to listen to Jonckowski. Over the past 30 years, they've raised 100's of thousands for their special charity, the John Mariucci Lodge at Camp Confidence for disabled children at Lake Sylvan in northern Minnesota. The lodge and camp were longtime causes for Mariucci, who died in 1987. The association has three major events each year: the fall Thanksgiving luncheon traditionally held at Mancini's Char House, golf tournament, and the spring roast - at which a former coach or player is inducted into the the Old Timers Hall of Fame. MHCA 1999 inductee Gordy Genz has served as long-time President of the annual events.
|Roastee||Roast Year||Date of Roast|
|Charles "Lefty" Smith||1993|
|Don & Ron Saatzer||2003||5-29-2003|
|Vic St. Martin||2007|
|Peter & Whitey Aus||2012||5-1-2012|
|Jerry Kreiger & Greg Shepherd||2015||5-5-2015|
|Bart & Brad Buetow||2018||5-8-2018|
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