"Canadian football?" you ask. Well, it's American football with a few different rules. The field is ten yards longer. There are twelve players instead of eleven. The distance from the line of scrimmage is one yard rather than eleven inches. The open-field kick is retained as a legal play. All offensive backfield players can be in motion at the snap. I wish I knew what any of this meant.
The important thing is: this year the cup was being held in our very own Vancouver, even though the local BC Lions were not partaking. Instead the Calgary Stampeders and the Hamilton Tiger-Cats rolled into town and the festivities began, a full four days of them including cheerleaders, concerts, food trucks, parades, and so on. It was unclear when the actual match was going to take place, or if anyone would notice.
We wandered down to sample the atmosphere, but the atmosphere was well below freezing so there weren't that many people around. It worked out well as we were able to grab way more of the organic gummy bears, mini torches, and other goodies being handed out by the lonely sponsors. We got to throw and kick mini footballs and spin prize wheels and stuff. Pete's highlight was getting to sit in a tractor, something of an obsession since seeing Uncle Andrew's tractor on the farm. (What do tractors have to do with football? Well, cattle capital Calgary was playing - there were more ten gallon hats and silver belt buckles around here than in Dallas).
And the match? It was apparently quite exciting, and Calgary won it in the end. Then they damaged the cup during their celebrations. Seems that Canadian football is more violent than its American counterpart too.
A band made up of Coast Salish First Nations. There were more people on stage than watching, but they were very good.
BC Tourism put entire rainforest in their tent!
And there was the opportunity to have a photo with a spirit bear.
I think we got a field goal! This didn't seem to translate into any tangible prize.
Where do you want this silage?
Hannah has e-loader skillz.
I hope they had heaters on stage - the band was far more scantily clad than the fans.
So, pub quizzers, remember: what's Canadian football's top trophy? That's right.