Beer League Hockey Traditions Will Be Here to Stay for Years
Written by Dane Nichol

Last Tuesday Beer League Talk retweeted a Yahoo Sports article about Mile One Centre in St. John’s, Newfoundland becoming the latest arena in Canada to put the kybosh on post-game beers. Nice try.
Look, arenas across Canada have been banning beers for years, but can you ever tell? No.
I’ve been in my fair share of dressing rooms over the years with a city by-law sign from 1988 on the wall that “forbids alcohol” yet I still see guys sipping a bevy after a hard night’s skate.
Traditions die hard. Beer league traditions die hard.

Let’s not forget that you can’t get banned from an arena for something you don’t do, or at least, aren’t seen doing. If you really want a beer after your game don’t leave any evidence. Sometimes if you leave some empties in the garbage can, the arena guy might see them and give you a warning; if you’re the least bit worried about him taking it further than the warning, take your empties with you. Bring a garbage bag and put empties in there and return them later, or toss them in your hockey bag and carry them out. Just like camping, pack out what you pack in. I recommend cans, sure they can be more expensive, but they’re lighter and quieter than bottles, but as an experienced drinker, you already know that. Also, keep your drinking to the dressing room. I once played in a pickup league where guys would drink out in the parking lot afterwards. One night a cop rolled right by us then decided to sit at the end of the street watching us. I wasn’t even drinking I was just standing there, but when I went to leave, an 18-year-old getting into his dad’s new car, in front of a cop who’d just seen a group of guys drinking in an arena parking lot, I might have been shitting my pants a little bit. When it comes to drinking after a game be smart about it, and don’t put your team mates in a compromising situation.

And what’s this about a parking lot brawl? If people are leaving the dressing room and getting into fights in the parking lot after drinking two beers, there’s a bigger problem. What happens on the ice, stays on the ice. And if you can’t do that maybe someone should be banned from a league, maybe they shouldn’t be playing hockey at all.
Canlan Ice Sports arena’s beer cart seems like a good idea, but I wouldn’t buy beer from a cart in an arena for the same reason I wouldn’t buy one from a beer cart on a golf course. Beer prices keep rising in a lot of places, and beer in Canada isn’t cheap. Bring your beer, buy one or two from the cart, and drink away, just like on the links. But again, be smart about it, don’t buy a couple beers and leave 20 empties in the garbage.

Dan D’Alvise has one thing right though, “how much can they drink in half an hour?” Half an hour is not a lot of time to get belligerently drunk, a lot wouldn’t even get buzzed. Especially when you factor in the amount of time it takes to shower and get changed. But everyone’s tolerance level is different. Be smart about it. I know you’ve heard a lot of “I have to work tomorrow” on the ice when a wild stick goes in someone’s direction, the same goes for other people on the road. Have a good time, get home safe, don’t drive drunk, and always remember The 10 Commandments of Beer League Hockey!

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