sabres captaincy:

Sabres to Begin New Season with a few Parties

Tonight, the Sabres’ captaincy is the main course.

As the Sabres gather for a more formal dinner tonight in Helsinki, coach Lindy Ruff will announce – finally – who will be the bearer of the captaincy for the 2011-12 season. It should be quite a party, and no doubt will kick off some great debate between fans when the news breaks (sometime around 1pm EST here).

It will be a relief to finally have one name to rally behind as the Sabres enter their first full season under the Terry Pegula Stanley Cup charge. (Unless, of course, Ruff does something wildly innovative like slapping a C on everyone’s jersey, as if to say the adage “We are all leaders on this team. There are no followers.”)

Meanwhile, fans can look forward to a couple parties of their own.

On Saturday, it’s “Pucktoberfest” time. From Sabres.com:

On Oct. 8. fans are invited to First Niagara Center to enjoy a plaza party with European flair and watch the team take on Los Angeles in Berlin on the HD video board in the arena. The event will give fans a chance to watch the team as it plays in Europe to open the 2011-12 regular season.

The festivities begin at 11:30 a.m. in the plaza outside First Niagara Center as the Auslanders, Buffalo’s premier German band, take the stage to perform traditional authentic German music as well as popular cover songs. Dancing to the Bavarian sounds will be the Schuhplattlers, a traditional German dance group from Western New York.

At 2 p.m., fans can head into the arena to watch the Sabres play the Los Angeles Kings in Berlin on the HD video board. The game is part of the NHL Premiere Series and is the second of two games the team is playing during its nine-day trip to Europe.

European-themed food and beverages will be available for purchase on the plaza and throughout the arena during the event. The Sabres Store will also be open so fans can purchase Sabres NHL Premiere Series merchandise.

Admission to the event is free, as is parking in the First Niagara Center parking ramp attached to the arena.

Goodtimes! On Monday, fans will be given a bit of a chance to join in the Stanley Cup Charge. Again, from Sabres.com:

The Buffalo Sabres are encouraging fans to volunteer for an organized video shoot on Washington Street, outside of First Niagara Center on Monday, October 10 at 2:45 p.m.

Washington Street will be closed to traffic between Scott Street and Perry Street at that time and fans can assemble at that location. The fans participating will march in a group down Washington Street towards the arena. The march, and participating fans, will be videotaped and the footage will be utilized for a Sabres video to be shown during a Sabres game at a later date.

Fans are asked to wear their blue and gold Sabres apparel, preferably with the new logo. Participants will be permitted to park for free in the First Niagara Center parking ramp and should assemble on the corner of Washington Street and Scott Street at 2:45 p.m.

For more information, please contact Sabres Game Presentation Coordinator Tara Myers via email at tara.myers@sabres.com.

Go Sabres.

(Tip-o-the-sunglasses to Brian Compton of NHL.com for posting a link to that vid on his Twitter feed today.)

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