For a few brief moments Saturday, youngster Morgan Clarke was hockey superstar Sidney Crosby.
Or, at least, he could put his head between the shoulders of a mannequin geared up in the equipment and jersey of the captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The setup, so people could have their photos taken as the head on a famous hockey body, is part of the Rogers Hometown Hockey festival in downtown Kelowna that runs until 6 p.m. Sunday.
“Crosby isn’t even my favourite NHL player,” said Morgan, 10, a Grade 5 student at Peter Greer Elementary in Lake Country.
“He’d be my second. My favourite right now is (Washington Capitals captain Alexander) Ovechkin, and my third is Kevin Bieksa (of the Vancouver Canucks).”
Morgan and his dad were at Hometown Hockey because they are mad about the game.
“We had to check it out,” said Morgan, who plays defence for the Winfield Bruins atom team.
Hometown Hockey is the travelling road show designed by TV broadcaster Rogers-Sportsnet to create events around some of the weekend NHL games it airs.
“For 25 straight weekends, we’re doing this,” said Rogers public relations spokesman Sebastian Gatica.
“Kelowna is the sixth stop of the season after Burnaby and just before Fort McMurray. We’re getting great turnouts.”
Every Hometown Hockey festival runs Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and it features everything about Canada’s obsession.
There’s ball hockey, slapshot speeds are recorded, you can get your photo on the cover of Sportsnet Magazine, get an autograph from recently retired NHLer Wade Redden, play air hockey, listen to live music and pick up free swag from Scotiabank Hockey Club Kelowna.
The highlight is when broadcaster Ron MacLean shows up Sunday to do the pre-game show for the 3:30 p.m. matchup of the Montreal Canadians and Detroit Red Wings from the Motor City.
The Sportsnet mobile studio is set up on Queensway with Okanagan Lake in the background.
MacLean will also do the period break broadcasts and the post-game show from the studio.
Earlier in the day, at 1:15 p.m., the Scotiabank Hotstove broadcast with Tara Slone will feature Redden and retired Canucks goalie Kirk McLean.
Kaden Flett, 10, a Grade 4 student at Bankhead Elementary, met Redden and got his autograph at the Scotiabank booth.
He also loaded up on the free stuff — jersey, tuque, gloves and hot chocolate.
Zackary Griffiths, 4, donned his Canucks jersey to play ball hockey with his dad, Simon.
“Zackary absolutely loves hockey,” said his dad.
“He’s learning to skate now so he can start playing. I’m looking forward to every weekend at the rink.”