Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Labour Day Classic in Regina a hit on social front

Bombers fans relish first victory since 2004

The Bombers are greeted by a mass of their faithful on the way to their bus.
    REGINA - Wow, it seems it takes longer to recover from the festivities of the Labour Day Classic weekend the older you get, but I know for myself I wouldn’t have it any other way.
    It is now two days after the Winnipeg Blue Bombers slipped past the Saskatchewan Roughriders 28-25 on a last play field goal by Justin Medlock in the annual clash of the two prairie rivals before a sellout crowd of 33,427 at old Mosaic Stadium in Regina. On this back to work Tuesday following the long weekend, a lot of people will still be talking about this clash during breaks and around the water cooler in Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
    Regardless of who wins, this game and weekend is always a victory for the fans. This is the best weekend on the CFL calendar to be a fan. I have worked the Labour Day Classic on a couple of occasions, which was great, but I definitely prefer being a straight fan on this weekend.
Bombers and Roughriders fans have some fun at Wayne's World.
    One of the best things of this annual affair is the chance for fans of both the Roughriders and Bombers to get out and socialize. When you are out at the lounges or nightclubs or even the beautiful park area around Wascana Lake in Regina, the majority of both sets of fans realize they aren’t that different when it comes to supporting their teams. They respect each other for the passion they have for their clubs.
    I know on Saturday night a few shots went down respecting that fact along with getting in on toast to the memory of the late legendary Bombers head coach and general manager and also former Roughriders coach Cal Murphy.
    In the immediate aftermath of the game, there were a small minority of Saskatchewan fans that viewed their displeasure about how the contest ended due to the fact the winning field goal was set up by a questionable pass interference call on Roughriders defensive back Justin Cox.
Weston Dressler always has time for the fans.
    Being a fan on the Roughriders side, I was disappointed as well, and I thought that call was blown. With that said, I am have seen my share of Roughriders losses, so I am mature enough to the point they don’t really affect me.
    I appreciate any chance I have to get out to a CFL game, especially the Labour Day Classic. For me, this was the 16th time I was at the annual affair between the Roughriders and Bombers, and Saskatchewan holds a 14-2 edge in those battles.
    This may sound strange, but I kind of enjoyed watching the Bombers fans celebrate their team’s win. A large group of regulars annually make the trip out from Winnipeg, and they are a great bunch.
When the Bombers won, they weren’t really rubbing the fact into the faces of the Roughriders supporters. The Bombers fans were in a state of joyful disbelief.
    One Winnipeg fan came up to me and said this was his 12th Labour Day Classic, and he had attended all of the previous 11 games that the Bombers had lost in a row. He was just so overjoyed his team won.
    The Winnipeg celebrations drifted out to “Wayne’s World,” which is the back yard of a house that is across and alley neighbouring the West Side of Mosaic Stadium.
    The Bombers supporters then drifted over to the team bus, where the players went through high-fiving and posing for selfie pictures with the huge gathering of their faithful as echoes of “Here we go Bombers, here we go!” filled the air.
I made some new friends at the Labour Day Classic.
    The scene reminded me of following the Roughriders out on the road to Calgary, and the same scene basically repeated itself outside of McMahon Stadium after a Saskatchewan victory.
    This past Sunday, the Bombers fans were enjoyed their day in the sun along with five straight wins as they should be. 
    I am old enough to know that days in the sun like this always seen to pass by way too quick, so you should absolutely soak them in while you can.

    If you have any comments you would like to pass along about this post, feel free to email them to stankssports@gmail.com.