Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Sports fans double their fun

Lucky few take in both Bombers, Jets

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For the sports fan it was the equivalent of scoring a touchdown and a goal on the same day.

Saturday afternoon saw Winnipeg Blue Bomber fans cheering on their team against the Montreal Alouettes.

But a few hours later, a lucky few were cheering on their Winnipeg Jets against the Carolina Hurricanes.

"I last did this when I was seven years old," said now 27-year-old Gordon Fritzsche, sporting a Bomber jersey and cap while his wife, Lindsay, was already in a Jets hoodie.

"But back then all you had to do was walk across the road (to the Winnipeg Arena). Now we'll have to drive downtown -- and it will be tight -- but I think I parked in a strategic spot."

Fritzsche said he would be peeling off his Bomber gear for the hockey game.

"I have a Jets jersey in a bag for a quick change later," he said.

"It's not a chance in a lifetime, but it's exciting for the city."

It wasn't hard to spot the lucky dual fans as they headed to the Canad Inns Stadium. Most were wearing Bomber gear, but somewhere -- be it a cap, shirt or hoody -- they were also wearing something with the Jets logo on it.

In the parking lot outside the stadium, several vehicles had two flags flapping, one with the Bombers' logo, the other with the Jets'.

Shelley Ostrove said he was planning to do a quick change to a Jets shirt on his way downtown.

"I just hope the games don't overlap," Ostrove said.

"But it's ideal -- two professional games in one day. It's the ultimate day. And if the Jets and Bombers both win, it will be even better."

Even a famous couple was taking in the couple of games -- singers Justin Bieber and his girlfriend Selena Gomez. The couple was watching the football game from the Blue and Gold room while at the MTS Centre, a box was set aside for them.

For the couple, it was the second day of sports-related fun in Winnipeg. On Friday they sped around on indoor go-karts at Speedworld on Berry Street which, according to staff, was the same track Bieber and his father tore around in 2007.

Tom Ethans, executive director of Take Pride Winnipeg, was sporting a homemade Jets tie painted by his daughter before the Bombers game.

"I think it's a fantastic day for Winnipeg to be able to have both professional sports teams play on the same day," Ethans said.

Shannon Holenski and her husband Glen were both wearing Jets hoodies as they entered the stadium.

"We're dressed in layers so we can just take some off," Holenski said.

"We even brought ponchos just in case it rains -- I wouldn't want to be wet for the Jets game."

But for thousands of sports fans like Barry Asgeirson, the two games on one day were a mixed blessing: He tried and failed to score Jets tickets.

"If I could get a ticket I would have been there," said Asgeirson, who was still sporting a Jets baseball cap underneath his Bombers cap.

"It's just fabulous for the city, but I haven't been to a game yet -- I'm hoping to get some for Christmastime."

kevin.rollason@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 23, 2011 A3

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