Manitoba

All Minnie wants for her 101st birthday is a Blue Bombers Grey Cup win

Minnie Steski celebrated her 101st birthday with a blue and gold-themed party. One of the things she wished for was a Blue Bomber Grey Cup win.

Lifelong fan Minnie Steski celebrates in style with Blue and Gold-theme birthday party

Lifelong Winnipeg Blue Bomber fan Minnie Steski celebrated her 101st birthday on Wednesday. Her family and friends threw her a Blue and Gold themed party to mark the occasion. (Holly Caruk/CBC)

Minnie Steski has spent a lifetime cheering on the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. A fan since she was in her 20s, Steski has been around longer than the team itself.

Now, as she turns 101 years old, one of the things she's wishing for is a Grey Cup win.

"It would [be] something I've hoped for and it would be wonderful to see them win," Steski says laughing. "But we shall wait and see."

Steski and her sister, Rose Steski, were faithful fans and had season tickets together for several years.

"They represented Winnipeg, and that meant a lot," says Steski. "It was just a wonderful occupation to be such a vivid fan of the Bombers. We thought there was nothing like it."
Elaine Steski, Minnie's sister in-law (right), says Minnie has been a devoted fan as long as she has known her. (Holly Caruk/CBC)

Steski's sister in-law, Elaine Steski, says the sisters did almost everything together, and went to games up until about 10 years ago. Minnie is the oldest of eight children and the only one of her siblings still alive.

"She misses her sister a great deal, and whenever there's a Bomber game on she says, 'I wish Rose was here to watch with me,'" Elaine says.

Minnie worked as a nurse and later as an X-ray technician before travelling the world. No matter where her travels took her, she was always a fan of the Blue and Gold.

Blue and Gold party

Now living in interim care at the Misericordia Health Centre, Steski watches Bombers' games on television. Family and friends wanted to throw her a Blue and Gold-theme party to celebrate.
Minnie Steski worked as a nurse, and later as an X-Ray technician, before retiring when she was 65. (Supplied)

"She's passionate about the Bombers, and if you're passionate about anything at 101 years old you should celebrate it," Elaine says.

Bomber alumni Rod Hill and Nick Miller paid Minnie a visit to wish her happy birthday and were joined by team mascots Buzz and Boomer.

One of Minnie's favourite players over the years was Ken Ploen, a former quarterback for the Bombers from 1957 to 1967. Ploen played during the same era as Minnie's favourite coach, Harold "Bud" Grant.

"I think [Grant] was a gentleman, a real gentleman. That's what I liked about him," says Minnie.

'It's wonderful when they win'

Even though the Bombers haven't done well in recent years, Minnie's adoration for the team hasn't wavered.

"There were times when it wasn't so good to watch the Blue [Bombers], but it's wonderful when they win," she said.

Her advice for the team is to keep trying.
Winnipeg Blue Bomber alumni Nick Miller (top left) and Rod Hill (right) came to celebrate Minnie's birthday. (Holly Caruk/CBC)

"Keep up the good work ... and always think of winning and not losing."

That "never give up" spirit is echoed in her words of wisdom on how to live a long and happy life.

"Enjoy life. Enjoy every moment of it, that's what I would say," she says.

"I think a lot of people, if things go wrong they give up, and they think that there's nothing else to live for, but that's wrong. There's a lot to live for."

For diehard fans like Minnie, that includes living to see the Bombers finally bring home another Grey Cup.

Lifelong Winnipeg Blue Bomber fan Minnie Steski celebrated her 101st birthday on Wednesday. Her family and friends threw her a blue and gold themed party to mark the occasion. 1:02