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2007 Hockey Day Minnesota - Baudette Bay January 20

Newspaper Supplied by Jeff Hovde

The origin of course was November 2, 2006 when the official announcement was made at the Minnesota Wild game that; January 20th, 2007 would be Hockey Day Minnesota.  Fast forward 3 months later, when teams squared off literally on frozen pond with game-time temperatures of 19 degrees, SE winds 14-22mph, held in Baudette Bay on the Rainy River, way up North right on the border to the land of maple syrup and Tim Hortons.  The event started small, with just 3 games included.  Kicking it all off was a game between St. Paul Johnson against Lake of the Woods, followed by the Denver Pioneers at the Minnesota Gophers in college hockey action.  Fittingly as the inaugural Hockey Day, and capping the day off was the former Minnesota North Stars - relocated to Dallas, TX in 1993 as the Dallas Stars, visiting the Minnesota Wild.

Lake of the Woods would win 5-3 over St. Paul, The Gophers beat the Pioneers 5-4, and it would take a shootout for the Stars to best the Wild.  2-1 in the inagural event.  The lone goal for the Wild scored by Mikko Koivu and assists going to Mark Parrish and Keith Carney.  For Dallas, Antti Miettinen would get an assist on the day.  For the outdoor game, the cold didn't seem to phase the players and spectators.  It was a spectacle that wasn't much of a thought at the time, but after knocking it out of the park, the idea became an annual event, and was expanded in the next season to become the truly day long event we've all come to know.

Vintage Minnesota Hockey Take:

The inaugural Hockey Day Minnesota to us; could be likened of that of the inaugural State H.S. Hockey Tournament in 1945, 62 years prior to in St. Paul where legendary tournament founder Gene Aldrich tournament was born, this time it was 'Founding Father of Hockey Day Minnesota in Lake of the Woods Head Coach Mike Pepera; whose idea for this event, then pitched to FSN and Minnesota Wild became a yearly reality.  Surrounded by the main event of a hockey game, several events took place throughout the day including a 5K walk/run, kids activities, snow bear rides, an ice sculpture contest, and some unexpected fun of kids and adults sliding on the hill of the Bay.

Although the inaugural State Tourney in 1945 was long before we were born by some 31 years, by researching the history of the event, and being present for the inaugural HDM, once can only think it was similar; as we were present, and was one of only x3 photographers and requested media members other than the FSN staff taking photos alongside the glass-less side boards and many inquiring to us: "You really drove up from the Twin Cities to see this event"?  The constructed rink on Baudette Bay was purchased by the City and hauled from Dickinson, ND and re-assembled by a team of volunteers piece by piece with no directions or numbered boards for the inaugural event.

Fast forward to todays' HDM and there is seemingly x20-30 photographers present and has been taken over by the MN Wild for credentialing as it has obviously gained in popularity over the years since Baudette Bay.  The weather of the inaugural HDM was somewhat warm in comparison to future years, including the following year in Baudette which was ABSOLUTELY freezing, and limited many afternoon activities due to the frigid cold.

Star Tribune HDM Article January 19, 2007

Sadly, most of the images we captured that day were lost when my SD Card on my camera went missing at the hotel.  To this day, it is something I am extremely upset about.

The first three years of HDM were all sponsored by fast food chains.  2007 by McDonald's, Dairy Queen in 2008, and 2009 by Burger King fast food restaurants.  FSN on-air coverage the first three years increased every year: 11 hours in 2007, 16 hours in 2008, and 20 hours in 2009.

Inaugural Hockey Day Look Back

Hockey Day Minnesota Results & Rosters:

Game Results

Home Away Winner Score Time Location
Lake of the Woods St. Paul Johnson Lake of the Woods 5-3 1:00 Baudette Bay
University of Minnesota Denver Pioneers University of Minnesota 5-4 5:30 Mariucci Arena
Minnesota Wild Dallas Stars Dallas Stars 2-1 (S.O.) 8:00 Xcel Energy Center

Lake of the Woods - Boys (LOOKING FOR ROSTER INFO)

Roster Position Number
Cody Hasbargen 8
Danny Usiski 9
Kyle Horntvedt D 18
John Clark - Captain F 5
Travis Anderson 13
Nick Baade F 15
Jalen Stay
? Morrison
Cam Kuznick 11
Ethan Leiding G
Mark Fabian Head Coach
Keith Block Assistant Coach

Saint Paul Johnson - BOYS

Roster Position Number
Joe Benert G 29
Mike Biagini
Joe Burkhart
Joe Donohule
Matt Donohule
Brad Dushaw - Assistant Captain 22
Andrew Ellis
Cory Ellis
Willy Faricy
Tanner Hendrickson - Assistant Captain 25
Tyler Hendrickson
Kevin Kieman
Trenton Krueger 17
Eric Larson
Mike Lemke
Pat McDonough 16
Gabe Pearson
Johnny Rozales
Joe Rubbelke 9
Andrew Ruberto
John Schmidt - Captain 7
Sam Soika 2
Caleb Thesefeld
C.J. Vega
Sam Wirth
Cory Walz Manager
Steve 'Moose' Younghans Head Coach
Assistant Coach