The Chicago Blackhawks may still be a couple of months away from lacing up their skates and getting ready for the 2014-15 season, but a number of the team’s most important players will be gathering in the Windy City this weekend for the annual Chicago Blackhawks Convention at the Hilton Chicago.
As always, there will be plenty of fun and hockey talk to be had by everyone, but if you’re heading to the convention and want to know what the hottest events of the weekend will be, then we have you covered as we run down the top 5 things to do at the annual festival.
Pat Foley Session: 9 a.m. Saturday
The International Ballroom will host one of the newest members of the Hockey Hall of Fame Saturday morning as Foley chats with CSN Chicago’s Pat Boyle about his broadcasting career. Murray Bannerman, Denis Savard, and Eddie Olczyk will also join in on the fun as Foley reminisces about his three plus decades in the broadcast booth.
Joel Quenneville’s Chalk Talk: 10:15 a.m. Saturday
For those interested in some of the X’s and O’s of the sport, the entire Blackhawks coaching staff will be on hand for this session. Olczyk will interview Quenneville, new assistant coach Kevin Dineen, Mike Kitchen, and new goaltending coach Jimmy Waite about what fans can expect from the team this season, and what it’s like to stand behind an NHL bench.
Conn Smythe Panel: 11:30 a.m. Saturday
This event, in the International Ballroom, will feature two Blackhawks players who have won the playoff MVP honors with the team (Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane), as well as one of the newest Blackhawks who also won the award as a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning, as center Brad Richards joins in the fun. For those who are all about the star power of the weekend, this is the panel to attend.
Blackhawks Game Show: 6:30 p.m. Saturday
For those looking for a way to relax and unwind after a long day of autograph chasing and learning about the game from some of the best players on the team, this game show is for you. Featuring Jim Corneilson, The Second City comedy troupe, and Hawks players Bryan Bickell, Ben Smith, and Jeremy Morin, this event in the International Ballroom has all the makings of a rollicking good time.
Hall of Fame Ensemble: 9:30 a.m. Sunday
Fans looking for a great glimpse into the past of the franchise need look no further than this star-studded Sunday panel, which will take place in the International Ballroom. Tony Esposito, Bobby Hull, Stan Mikita, Pierre Pilote and Denis Savard will all be on hand to discuss their successes with the Blackhawks, as well as what makes the current crop of Blackhawks successful.