On May 20 and 21, 2017, Canada 150 Hockey Days took place in Astana, Kazakhstan where international and Kazakhstani hockey legends met on the ice to celebrate Canada’s 150th Anniversary, 25 years of Canada-Kazakhstan Diplomatic Relations and 60 years of Hockey in Kazakhstan. Organized by the Embassy of Canada to Kazakhstan, NAFA was a proud sponsor of the event for the second year in a row.
On May 20, a charity Gala dinner was held to support the development programs of hockey in Kazakhstan for underprivileged children. In his welcoming speech, the Ambassador Shawn Steil thanked all the sponsors of the event.
The gala dinner ended with a special performance by Canadian band, the Sheepdogs.
On May 21, the Barys Arena opened its doors to the first Hockey Hall of Fame exhibition in Kazakhstan, which displayed unique hockey memorabilia, some of which was brought all the way from Toronto just for this occasion. The opening ceremony was hosted by First Deputy Prime Minister Askar Mamin, Canada’s Ambassador to Kazakhstan Mr. Shawn Steil, six-time Stanley Cup winner the Honorable Ken Dryden, along with a famous Russian hockey player Igor Larionov.
Legends of the hockey world including Ken Dryden, Igor Larionov, Sergey Nemchinov, Brian Propp, Dennis Maruk, and the most famous hockey couple, Paralympic Gold Medalist and six-time World Champion All-Star Billy Bridges and three-time Olympic champion Sami Jo Small, all took to the ice to provide guidance and expert play in the sport.
Canada 150 Hockey Days was made complete with a breakfast of traditional Canadian pancakes with a real maple syrup, as well as a raffle of a wide range of luxury items provided by sponsors and legends.
NAFA sponsored a number of exciting prizes for the event. This list includes CHAPURIN’s stylish jacket made of NAFA Northern Beaver; a head band braid made of NAFA Mink by Russian designer Sergey Efremov, a clutch by Natalia Valevskaya made of different colors of mutation NAFA Mink, and finally a magnificent Black NAFA coat by GIANFRANCO FERRÉ FURS.
The day concluded with a match for the Heritage Cup between Team Canada and Team Kazakhstan, which was attended by Sean Perry Steil, Askar Mamin, Kazakhstan Erlan Sagadiyev and legendary hockey stars. The match ended with the victory of the Kazakhstan team.