For the Love of Hockey….

By Bethany Drysdale

The NHL promotes Hockey is For Everyone in various spotlights throughout the season. Hockey players are from all over the globe, men and women, kids and adults, sled and skates, and so many other forms of inclusion. As a parent, I absolute support this diversity and would like to share a spotlight story that is personal to my family. When we first began attending the Vegas Golden Knights practices last season, there were very few fans watching. As the playoffs came around, it was clearly the most popular place to be in Vegas. For my son, Lucas, the added crowds and noise made him anxious and afraid to go anymore. So we took a break and came back in the fall to watch training camp. The fear of the crowds and noise worried Lucas and something he previously loved, was no longer fun. That was the case until we met two new friends who made his fear and anxiety diminish…..

            Winston Doodle and Bark Andre Furry are two well-known honorary mascots around City National and the hockey community. We have the privilege of getting to know both of them (and their humans) since the start of the 2018-19 season. Last week, I sat down for an interview with Winston Doodle to find out more about him and what he is doing for the hockey community. As a trained therapy dog, Winston is active in many different charities, usually with Bark, such as Make a Wish, Shriners Hospitals, Bark in the Park, Noah’s Animal House, Animal Foundation, and hospital visits throughout the Valley. He has been featured on the Golden Knights social media, as well as the local new stations for his puck techniques and take downs of stuffed hockey players. Despite his busy days, he takes in the VGK morning skates, where we love to sit with him.

            Hockey is for everyone, whether we are two and four legged fans, hockey unites us all. Feeling more confident going to watch hockey, gave both of my boys the courage to skate themselves. Now they are better skaters than mommy and daddy. We personally want to thank our furry pals for making the kids more comfortable.  The positive experiences of being next to Winston and Bark will not be forgotten. When we see them in Downtown Summerlin or at a fan event, it re-enforces that connection. I encourage anyone who meets them to say hello. I am told by Mr Doodle and Mr Furry that they also like beef jerky and Shake Shack.  I look forward to asking Bark some one-on-one questions in the coming weeks. Stay tuned…

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Bethany Drysdale was voted by our readers as Best Writer on Vegas Hockey