LOVELAND, Colo. - It is one of the most iconic images in all of sport, and it paid a visit to Poudre Valley Hospital in Fort Collins and to the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland as part of ECHL All-Star festivities. Lord Stanley's Cup dates back to 1893 when it was given as a trophy to amateur teams playing in Canada. It has since been awarded to the winner of the National Hockey League for nearly a century.
For the young and old, it was a chance to have a picture taken with an image recognized the world over. 8-year-old Jaden Aguilera skipped school to be first in line. Estes frostbite victim Tranton King took time away from treatments. Little Logan Weatherby of Fort Collins was so tiny, he fit inside.
Cup keeper Howie Borrow noted there is a certain amount of etiquette in being around the Cup: “We let people touch it, give it a kiss – a hug if they like – picking it up is basically reserved for the players. They’ve earned the right to be able to do that because they’ve won it . . . “
Made of 97 percent Sterling silver and 3 percent nickel, the Cup is full of lore, some of it from the Colorado Avalanche. After winning the Cup in 1996, Adam Deadmarsh's name was mis-spelled - and became the first such error to be corrected. Members of the team hand-carried the Cup to the top of the highest point in the Rocky Mountains - Mt. Elbert - after winning the Cup for the 2nd time in 2001.
Colorado Eagles owner Ralph Backstrom has his name on the Cup six times for winning with Montreal as a player in the late '50s and early '60s. He noted “It’s got a lot of history, lot of tradition. I think when we have an exhibition with the Stanley Cup, it’s one of the main attractions, by far.”
But his name will disappear from the cup because of interchangeable bands that move from the bottom to the top before being removed to insure that the Cup will always stay one size. He was just happy to be able to see it at least one more time.
“I was told I got 7 years left on the trophy, so (laughs) I’m gonna enjoy those seven years!”