Where do I begin...what a fun night! When I went to Catwalk last year I didn't think I could have had any more fun, but this year's was absolutely great. I really don't want to ramble on about every single detail because then this entry might turn out to be the longest blog entry known to man. Let's see...
Well everyone looked absolutely adorable. So many people dressed for the event in their 1920s attire and the Town Ballroom was all decked out. When I got there I saw Ryan pretty early and I decided that I should talk to him before it got too crazy. Even though there were a lot of people there who were dying to talk to him, he was extremely friendly and nice. I got to talk to him about photography which was really awesome...I meant to talk to him about it last year but I forgot. I told him that the photos I take of him at the hockey games get the most views on my Flickr and he thought that was funny. When I was talking to him his brother Bryce and sister Brynne came up to us and Ryan was so cute. He was like, "These are my siblings!" and he introduced them to me. They both looked so cute in their 20s outfits. I got my picture with them and Ryan and I also got a picture with just Ryan and me.
Later on I saw Ryan's dad hanging out and I went up to him and was like, "Um I just have to say that your son is a really good goalie." Haha. He laughed and we talked about Catwalk for a bit...I told him that I went last year as well and how it was such a great event and how I was real excited that it was 20s themed this year. We talked about Ryan for a little bit and Ryan sounds just like his dad haha. I saw Rick Jeanneret a little bit later and I had to get my picture taken with him. My dad used to work with the Sabres in broadcasting so he knows my dad and he was like, "Why isn't he here?!" Then Ryan's grandparents came up to us when we were talking to Rick and they introduced themselves to Rick...I got to talking to them and they were the sweetest people. They were so gracious and they kept thanking me for coming.
Sooo, there was really good food and the auction items as always were really great. Everyone was just walking around, eating & drinking and having a good time. I talked to Ryan again and I just told him how proud I was of him and how amazing he's been playing lately and that we're real lucky to have him. He was very gracious and I told him how it's real nice to see how well-rounded he is and he thanked me and he asked me if I was having fun.
So now onto the real fun stuff...the live auction and the fashion show. Ryan was hilarious when they were auctioning things off. When they were auctioning off the black lab puppy Ryan did his best Russian accent and asked how much Max had (he won the puppy last year). The puppy was won by Dan Paille's fiancée. Before they auctioned it off Ryan was coddling the little puppy and it was pretty damn cute. When they were auctioning off the bubble hockey set Rick Jeanneret was like, "I'll go to the winner's house and call the game for you." and Ryan was like, "WHUT I can't even get him to come to my house!" haha. When they were auctioning of a poster with a bunch of former Sabres' autographs, Ryan was trying to read the signatures and he was like, "Um...I can't read these...I don't know all of their numbers" and he had to get Rob Ray to read them and Rayzor read a few off and then was like, "Whatever...good enough." So during the fashion show Harry Neale & Rick Jeanneret were absolutely hilarious. They kept making cracks at the players and it was pretty funny. Tim Connolly did the worm on the catwalk and I was like, "OMG...don't get hurt!!" and when Gaustad was leaning down to touch people's hands, Ryan was like, "Woah, don't pull too hard on his arm!" in reference to Goose's "upper-body injury". I also had a little peek into backstage and I saw a shirtless Paul Gaustad running around. That was a treat. So the fashion show was great and they all looked so cute.
After the fashion show, Drew Stafford played some songs on the drums and Ryan played the guitar. Derek Roy did the vocals and it was pretty funny. Then someone gave Petey the microphone and he kept having the audience do chants. First he was like, "When I say 'PLAY' you say 'OFFS'!" and then he was like, "When I say 'TRADE' you say, 'RIVET!'" haha. What a jokester. So I found myself in the ~VIP Area~ by the end of the night where most of the Sabres were hanging out with their friends, girlfriends, wives, etc. And Pominville was our typical little Pommers...his fiancée (or wife? Hell I don't know...I avoid those hockey player gossip message boards like the plague so I have a very vague idea on who the player's girlfriends are for the most part) had her shoes off but when she wanted to put them back on our dear little Pominville put them on for her. What a nice boy. By that time I had a lot of glasses of wine so I went up to Ryan and gave him a big hug and I was like, "Zanggg I love your hat!" He was wearing one of those Irish caps...and then I was like, "I have to say that I think you're absolutely adorable!" and he smiled and said he appreciated that. Haha wow...I really hope he doesn't remember that encounter. But it was really, really neat to watch the Sabres off the ice and just goofing around with each other and having fun. It really was a lot of fun and you could tell they were all having a great time, especially Ryan. I caught him throwing stuff at someone and he was ducking by the bar to hide hahaha. Drew Stafford was hilarious trying to auction off the cutout boards of some of the players... someone shouted that they'd pay $50 dollars for one and he was like, "$50?! Come on, you know you can sell this on eBay for like $400." I saw that Andrew Peters' wife bought the cardboard cutout of Peters and they were taking pictures with it haha.
So all in all the night was fantastic. I had a blast. Ryan was a great host and he was a sweetheart to everyone. Great entertainment, great drinks, great food, great venue, great people...it's a perfect night for any Sabres fan and if you haven't been to one yet you're really missing out. I told Ryan that it was a real great thing that he has them and he was like, "Well we're going to keep having them!" So that's awesome. I met up with Rachael and Lucinda and Jill and Jay which was real awesome!
Alright...I know you all want to look at my pictures! I just have to say that they're pretty bad quality because I just had my point and shoot and not my nice camera, but oh well. You can see them on my Flickr page. Here's two of my favorites:
Ryan and myself of course!
Ryan looking cute with his Irish cap after the fashion show
I didn't take as many pictures as I planned on, but I did take a lot of videos! Check them out on my YouTube page. Make sure you watch the ones with Ryan and the puppy...they're precious. Ryan's Russian impression is in the one where they're auctioning off the puppy. The one of Harry Neale & Rick Jeanneret is pretty funny too. So enjoy the videos...they'll give you a nice perspective of what it was like all night.