On Saturday, August 21st, the National Hockey League’s championship trophy, the Stanley Cup, was brought to the park by the Chicago Blackhawks’ senior vice president for business operations, the curator from the Hockey Hall of Fame, and several team photographers. The Chicago Blackhawks are the 2010 National Hockey League champions.
As part of the tradition that each member of the team is allowed to have the cup for a day, Chicago Blackhawks majority owner and chairman of the board Rocky Wirtz brought it to Springfield, Illinois, as an honor to a favorite aunt who lives here. The cup also spent time at the Illinois State Fair, which was going on in Springfield at the time, as well as the Lincoln Tomb and Lincoln Home.
The cup and its handlers arrived before the park was open to the public, but Lincoln Home staff met the Blackhawks staff and were allowed to take pictures with the cup. Ranger Jason Collins provided a tour of the Lincoln Home and curator Susan Haake provided the Blackhawks staff the opportunity to view and photograph Abraham Lincoln’s copy of Life of Black Hawk, which was then placed in the cup as a special photo opportunity.
By the time the cup was being placed back in the transport vehicle, the site had opened to the public. One visitor immediately recognized it and asked the Blackhawks staff to “Hoist it!” The senior vice president immediately obliged.
Superintendent Dale K. Phillips, a life-long hockey fan, suggested that this was the first time the Stanley Cup had been at an NPS site. He expressed his appreciation that Wirtz would choose to bring the cup to Springfield and specifically to the Lincoln Home.