Members of the Montreal Impact visited Marcel-Laurin Park last week and St-Laurent residents definitely gave them the rock star treatment. Several hundred fans cheered the players during a ceremony. Others waited close to an hour to get an autograph and photo.
It was all part of the Impact’s 2018 Summer Celebration tour. St-Laurent was the team’s fourth and final stop this year.
« Children couldn’t wait to finish school today. To them it was a great opportunity to get up close, » says Eric Labrosse, executive vice-president of Soccer Saint-Laurent.
Earlier this summer, players also visited parks in St-Lazare, Terrebonne and Repentigny.
« We feel privileged and we thank them for choosing us as their only stop on the island of Montreal, » says St-Laurent mayor Alan DeSousa.
Several players from the Soccer St-Laurent league took part in the event. The borough’s program is one of the largest in Montreal. More than two thousand people are registered to play in recreational and competitive leagues.
The Impact players in attendance showed off their dribbling and passing skills to the crowd for about an hour. They played in mini-games with youngsters.
« This is something I personally like to do. I love helping and showing the kids. Being a role model, » says Impact goalkeeper James Pantemis.
The 21-year-old player hopes to take part in the team’s Summer Celebration tour again next season.