Thunder Bay hockey hero Patrick Sharp brought the Stanley Cup home to the city on Friday to let fans share in his big win.

An excited crowd of several hundred people who were eager to meet the hockey hero and his hardware, waiting in line outside the Fort William Gardens. The lineup stretched around the corner of Vickers Street, almost to the fire station.

Some people began their wait at 6:30 a.m.

"I was here just before seven o'clock, and there were a couple early birds that were here even earlier than that," said Thunder Bay resident John Schelling, who said he missed seeing the cup in Thunder Bay a few years ago.

"I think it's very cool to see that we have very famous hockey players that are from Thunder Bay," said 11-year-old Dylan Morrison. "I'm also a big fan of Patrick Sharp."

Sharp won the National Hockey League's championship trophy with the Chicago Blackhawks earlier this year.

'A gentleman'

Walter Slipperjack and his family met Sharp and had their photo taken with the cup.

"(Sharp) was a gentleman," Slipperjack said. "It was my first (season) really following a team and they won the cup ... it was pretty awesome

[seeing the cup]."

Sharp's fans consumed much of his time with picture-taking and requests for autographs.


Jason Anderson brought his English Bulldog, Mac, for a picture with Patrick Sharp and the Stanley Cup. (Josh Lynn/CBC)

Jason Anderson brought his English Bulldog, Mac, for a picture with Sharp. "I grew up with [Sharp], went to school with him," he said. "It's nice to see a hometown [player] win the Stanely Cup twice." 

Anderson said Sharp "was actually kind of excited himself [to see the dog] because he has a dog himself, a Basset Hound named Shooter."

Earlier in the day, Sharp brought the cup to the George Jeffrey Children's Centre.

"It was awesome to have him and there was a lot of kids there," said Cara Baraniuk, who works at the centre. "We (had him) in the gym and ... it was just packed."