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Ice tales from a bygone era

Excited fans reminisce about battles of old as Jets-Oilers legends skate again

RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS<br>Fans young and old in orange and white make their way to entrance to stadium before gates open Saturday.<br>Heritage Classic weekend - Saturday
RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Fans young and old in orange and white make their way to entrance to stadium before gates open Saturday.
A couple of young fans are some of the first in line at Investors Group Field to take in the alumni game this afternoon between the Winnipeg Jets and Edmonton Oilers as part of the NHL
A couple of young fans are some of the first in line at Investors Group Field to take in the alumni game this afternoon between the Winnipeg Jets and Edmonton Oilers as part of the NHL's Heritage Classic weekend. - RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS<br>Almost Famous plays to a sea of white and orange in the fun zone next to the stadium prior to the Alumni game Saturay. <br> -
RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Almost Famous plays to a sea of white and orange in the fun zone next to the stadium prior to the Alumni game Saturay.
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RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS<br>Five-year-old Jason Stratuliak holds his ticket to the alumni game while sitting on his dad Jason - '/>
RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Five-year-old Jason Stratuliak holds his ticket to the alumni game while sitting on his dad Jason's shoulders in line to get into stadium Saturday.
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RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS<br>Marcy Beaucage gives his son Lee a hug prior to the alumni game after Lee bought tickets for them to attend the Saturday game.<br> -
RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS
Marcy Beaucage gives his son Lee a hug prior to the alumni game after Lee bought tickets for them to attend the Saturday game.
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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 22/10/2016 (909 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Lee Beaucage sported an old helmet and his Edmonton Oilers jersey to pay homage to Wayne Gretzky at the 2016 Heritage Classic alumni game Saturday.

He said he wasn’t scared to be wearing blue and orange to Investors Group Field. But today’s matchup between the current Jets and Oilers would be a different story.

“This day’s all about fun for the fans,” he said outside the stadium at the spectator plaza before the puck dropped. “Tomorrow, I wouldn’t be caught dead in an Edmonton jersey.”

Beaucage took his dad, Marcy, who was wearing his original Dale Hawerchuk jersey, to the game to pay him back for all the games he brought him to as a kid.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 22/10/2016 (909 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Lee Beaucage sported an old helmet and his Edmonton Oilers jersey to pay homage to Wayne Gretzky at the 2016 Heritage Classic alumni game Saturday.

He said he wasn’t scared to be wearing blue and orange to Investors Group Field. But today’s matchup between the current Jets and Oilers would be a different story.

"This day’s all about fun for the fans," he said outside the stadium at the spectator plaza before the puck dropped. "Tomorrow, I wouldn’t be caught dead in an Edmonton jersey."

Beaucage took his dad, Marcy, who was wearing his original Dale Hawerchuk jersey, to the game to pay him back for all the games he brought him to as a kid.

RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS</p><p>Marcy Beaucage gives his son Lee a hug prior to the alumni game after Lee bought tickets for them to attend the Saturday game.</p>

RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Marcy Beaucage gives his son Lee a hug prior to the alumni game after Lee bought tickets for them to attend the Saturday game.

"I bought (the tickets) for us," he said. "We’ve been going to hockey games forever and it’s nice to actually take him for a change. This is a special one."

His father said he wanted to make it to the practices earlier in the week but couldn’t, so it was extra important to see the greats skate Saturday.

"I remember going to games when I was younger to the original Jets games, the WHA games, when (Bobby) Hull and the Hot Line was at their prime. It’s going to be nice to see Mike Ford here, he’s one of the original ones from the WHA teams that’s skating today."

Meanwhile, Samantha Taylor was wearing her boyfriend’s Edmonton jersey, and even though he is the big Oilers fan, he was the one sporting the Winnipeg Jets jersey.

"We used to watch (hockey) around Christmas time and stuff, but I got really into it once I started dating him," she said pointing at her boyfriend, Justin Krahn.

RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS</p><p>Samantha Tayor and her boyfriend Justin Krahn enter the fun zone.</p>

RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Samantha Tayor and her boyfriend Justin Krahn enter the fun zone.

"It’s so exciting. It’s a great experience so far. We took the shuttle over here and it’s all really fun. This is only my second hockey game."

Krahn was the one to take her to her first NHL game last season between the Jets and Calgary Flames.

Krahn said he was extremely excited to watch the Oilers alumni team convene on the ice because those were the players he heard about as a kid.

"You grow up an Oilers fan and you hear about all these guys so it’ll be kind of cool to see them all skate."

Families looking to raise young hockey fans also brought a number of children to the alumni game.

RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS</p><p>The MacInness family - Doug, Shannon, son Ben and daughter Abby - show off their excitement outside the stadium prior to the start of the alumni game Saturday. </p>

RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

The MacInness family - Doug, Shannon, son Ben and daughter Abby - show off their excitement outside the stadium prior to the start of the alumni game Saturday.

Doug MacInnes and his wife Shannon brought their son Ben, 8, and daughter Abby, 11, to the game. He said watching the alumni hit the ice meant a lot to the whole family.

"I was a Jets fan as a young kid so for me this is terrific. This is the era that I grew up watching. It’s special for me and it’s special for the kids."

"I’ve realized that (the players) are 50. When they announced the teams he said, ‘Dad, I’ve got to see Wayne Gretzky and Teemu Selanne play and it might be the last time I ever get to see them play.’ So it’ll be a bit of reminiscing but it’ll be neat for them to get to see them as well."

Darren Coldwell lives near Steinbach and moved to the area from Saskatchewan 15 years ago. Being between NHL franchises, Coldwell became an Oilers fan as his parents took him to Edmonton every year to see the team play. Now, he’s excited his son, Kaden, 9, gets the chance to see Gretzky.

Coldwell wore No. 99 while Kaden sported a Mark Messier jersey.

"My favourite NHL team is the Edmonton Oilers," Kaden said, noting it was all about tradition. "I just wanted to keep it on for my dad and my family."

The Jets won the game 6-5.

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History

Updated on Saturday, October 22, 2016 at 5:15 PM CDT: Slideshow added.

6:47 PM: Adds slideshow

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