Sens Army flocks to Fan Fest

Joan Charles is proud to belong to the Sens Army.

That’s why she didn’t mind leaving Montreal to drive to Kanata for the annual Fan Fest.

“I get a lot of crap for it,” from Habs fanatics, said Charles.

They’ve only been married three years but husband, Errio Cayeau, who isn’t feeling the Senators, has already learned to support Charles’ interest.

“I’m just going to stay beside her and do everything she wants to do,” said Cayeau, shaking his head.

Charles laughed.

The event drew thousands to the Canadian Tire Centre, featuring two team practices, fan press conferences, autograph sessions, a Senators’ intra-squad game, and an array of games and entertainment.

At $10 a head, “it’s not as expensive as coming to a game,” said Dan “Super Fan” Whissell of Westboro.

The grandfather of six said when he has game tickets,“everybody wants to come.” He was holding a #1 jersey already inked by a few players.

“That’s my lucky jersey,” said Whissell.

Red jerseys were donned by Kara Taylor of Orleans and her clan.

“We usually come every year,” said Taylor, noting their strategy.

“Just go where the shortest lines are,” she said.

A long line didn’t deter Robert Hickey and son Curtis, 8, from enjoying the day.

“It’s great so far. Fun for the kids,” said Hickey.

He drove from Calabogie strictly to support the Sens.

The weather was pretty much perfect.

“Couldn’t ask for anything better,” said Hickey.

“We’re finally getting summer.”

The Hickeys were waiting for a chance to spin the wheel and snag a prize.

“We’re hoping to see everything,” said Hickey, “Hopefully we can get an autograph, or two.”

Watching players skate around and compete in the intra-squad game seemed to be on everyone’s to-do list.

Paul Pahal of Barrhaven was walking with his older boys, ages nine and six, decked in Sens red.

“We’re going to get him a jersey,” he said, motioning to the youngest son, who’s almost two.

A Sens T-shirt was enough for Kaleb Nelson, 9, of Stittsville, to represent.

Nelson was posing with team mascot, Spartacat.

“He’s big into hockey, I’m big into hockey,” said his father, Ryan.

They were going to check out the question and answer period, hopefully with Erik Karlsson in the hot seat.

Twitter: @kellyroche6

http://www.ottawasun.com/2014/09/27/sens-army-flocks-to-fan-fest

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