Marlborough – Business leaders from across the region gathered at the Best Western Royal Plaza Hotel Nov. 19 for the Marlborough Regional Chamber of Commerce (MRCC) annual meeting luncheon.
The event featured guest speaker Rick Middleton, a former star for the Boston Bruins during 1976-1988. Middleton regaled the audience with stories of his impressive career that saw him score nearly 1,000 points. A three time all-star, Middleton also played for several years with the New York Rangers prior to joining the Bruins.
Middleton also commented on one of the most difficult Bruins games he ever played in – the infamous “too many men on the ice” game versus the Montreal Canadiens in 1979. During that game, he recalled, the Bruins were leading against their hated rivals with less than three minutes to go. But sadly, as all Boston fans know all too well, a line change gone wrong resulted in a “too many men on the ice” penalty. The Canadiens took advantage of the situation and went on to win the game in overtime, allowing them to advance to the Stanley Cup finals, and ultimately winning their fourth consecutive championship.
Middleton also recounted his experience as a coach for the US National Sled Hockey Team (Paralympics) in 2002. In spite of never coaching before and having no experience with sled hockey, Middleton was able to turn a team in disarray into one that won the gold medal at the 2002 Salt Lake Paralympics.
“Working with them was the biggest thrill of my life in hockey,” he said. “Disability is the wrong word for them. They are phenomenal athletes.”
Prior to Middleton’s speech David McCay, of Mirick O’Connell and the chair of the MRCC Board of Directors, gave a brief overview of the chamber’s prior year.
Highlights included, he said, 70 new members who had joined; a total of $5,000 in scholarships given to local high school seniors; organizing the city’s Heritage Festival; and partnering with the city and Marlborough Economic Development Corporation on a myriad of events. The chamber also celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2014.
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