Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Chicago Blackhawks, 2013 Stanley Cup Champions

This post is devoted to everything Blackhawks because I am in love with them. This was the best season of sports I have ever witnessed firsthand: from the Blackhawks' record-breaking winning streak to a Stanley Cup Final game on my birthday; from hugging strangers in the rafters of the Madhouse on Madison after Brent Seabrook's overtime goal in Game 7 of the Western Conference Semifinals to every, single time I got to hear the roar of the crowd as Jim Cornelison sang the National Anthem; from waving my rally towel after the Blackhawks defeated the LA Kings in double overtime of Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals to kissing the Stanley Cup; it has been a short but thrilling season and I'm so fortunate to have been able to attend so many games and see so many historic moments for hockey and sports in general. 

As I mentioned in my Telluride posts, the Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup in Game 6 of a great championship series against the Boston Bruins. I was in Colorado when I witnessed their victory, and while I happily sobbed on everyone I met in Telluride and initiated a small, celebratory pub crawl, I was not in Chicago to partake in the insane post-game celebrations. I did, however, manage to get back in town just in time to greet the players and snap a few photos of them partying and hoisting the Stanley Cup at Rockit Bar & Grill. (And by "just in time," I mean that I literally got off the plane and drove straight to Rockit.) A few days later, two million of my friends and I packed downtown Chicago to be part of the Blackhawks' parade and rally celebrations. I've included some photos from that as well, but to see more head over to Do312.

The greatest trophy in sports, the Stanley Cup. 

The Captain and his Playoffs mutton chops, Jonathan Toews

Champagne showers for the fans!

Alternate Captain and my favorite Defenseman, Duncan Keith

Marian Hossa, one of the most skilled players in the NHL. He's a beauty to watch.

Alternate Captain and complete stud muffin, Patrick Sharp

Andrew Shaw and his badass scar. He's hockey tough.

 Defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson is the king of blocked shots.

2013 Conn Smythe Trophy winner (Playoffs MVP), Patrick Kane 

 The crowd continued to grow outside of Rockit.

Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook, who has a knack for scoring clutch overtime goals

Veteran Jamal Mayers showed off his dance moves (and awesome Playoffs facial hair).

 The Captain and I have at least one thing in common: we both love champagne.

See what I mean? 

Impressive rookie Brandon Saad and Patrick Sharp took a moment to enjoy the scene.

The pride of Minnesota, Nick Leddy 

Seabrook a.k.a. Seabsie 

Viktor Stalberg a.k.a. "The Swedish Rocket." (He's super fast.)

Saad with Lord Stanley 

Incredible season for goalie Corey Crawford. Hats off. He also gives one hell of a speech

Bryan Bickell (with Patrick Sharp) had his best season yet.

More fans

The crowd at the Blackhawks Rally in Grant Park

I love this version of Lord Stanley.

Shortly after this photo was taken, Duncan Keith gave his epic "Braveheart" speech

Red and black taking over the streets!

Dreams come true

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Telluride Bluegrass Festival, Day 4

Well, I guess all good things really must come to an end, even the 40th Annual Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Day 4 was an excellent conclusion to a festival filled with dazzling talent, chill festivarians, and mind-blowing scenery. It was seriously difficult to leave. Thank you TBF and Telluride for the memories! 
I hope to see you again soon!

Béla Fleck played a really pretty early afternoon set.

The Infamous Stringdusters were fun live. It was cool to watch them smile and interact with each other on the stage.

For lunch, we took the gondola up to beautiful Mountain Village to check out the view.

And what a view it was!

Back in town, I did more wandering before heading back to TBF.

Hey dog!

It's legal, y'all.

One last walk to TBF...

Jackson Browne at sunset? Ummm OKAY! Here he is with Sarah Watkins and Sean Watkins.

My personal Jackson Browne highlight was when he played "These Days" with none other than Jerry Douglas on the slide. In fact, it was my favorite TBF moment.

The Drepung Monks completed their sand mandala on Sunday. It was truly remarkable to witness the process. The monks tour often, so if they happen to be coming to a town near you, please go see the mandala creation for yourself!

Enjoying the perfect ending to a perfect fest: listening to the Telluride House Band from the lawn.

After TBF, I was lucky enough to get one more day in Telluride so I went on an offroad adventure with my fiancé and her family. It was unreal. (Later that day, as I mentioned in a previous post, I watched the Blackhawks win the Stanley Cup at Smuggler's. It seriously doesn't get any better.)

Imogene Pass. 13,144 feet above sea level. Wow.

Snow in June!

Man, I miss you Colorado!