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BUSINESS

Marketing Specialist provides tips on how businesses can penetrate U.S. markets

BY SYLVIA DICKENS

“Canadian businesses have to prove they are worthy of being in the U.S. market,” Jim Mills, a specialist in marketing, told Rotarians last week.

“They have to know how to get to the United States market.”

Mr. Mills points out that the quality of Canadian products is better than that of other countries, based on an international quality control code which helps to guarantee that good quality products are being exported and imported.

To get into the U.S., Canadian businesses need to look at their sales thrust. Owner of Curtis Products Inc. of Toronto, the former Gananoquean explains the different methods used.

Through the direct sales force, managers know the concentration will be on their product. Unfortunately, this method involves greater overhead.

Independent representatives and sales organizations in the United States handle lines geared to the specific industry to which Canadians are aiming.

They look at the product at a selling, rather than at a manufacturing, level. Also, they will have more people on the road earning commission.

“Even if the sales go up, the return may not,” Mr. Mills adds. “Entrepreneurs won’t take their products into the U.S. markets unless they can make money.

“They have to give themselves five years and consider the costs, and the thrust into the American market must be a constant effort,” he continues. “Canadians have to look forward to where they want to go.”

He says Canadians must go into the U.S. markets if they expect to be successful in Canada or niche themselves on product need.

The next, most important point focuses on sales support material.

Promotional material used in the Canadian market doesn’t work in the U.S.

“The U.S. is more sophisticated,” he says. “They look for better quality promotional packages which are required by the U.S.”

This includes glossy full-color sales literature presented in a concise, well-organized package.

Of course, the promotional package must tell the entire story.

The most effective way to overcome missing parts of a presentation, he says, is to develop a 15-minute video on the product. Included will be facts about the product, user testimonials, and the benefits of the product to the end user.

Point out the quality workmanship and how the product meets all code requirements. Conclude with guarantees.

“You need a quality video for the U.S. market,” he says. “It gets the message across exactly as you want it told.”

Customer service was high on his list of selling features.

“I can’t say enough about Canadian customer service,” he says. “Canada has terrible customer service. In Canadian restaurants you feel they are doing you a favor in serving you. In U.S. restaurants, they smile, say how are you and will do whatever you want.

“A lot of attention has to be put on Canadian service,” he adds. “You’ve got to make them feel they’re dealing with the guy next door. A lot of people don’t spend enough time training staff on customer service.”

Mr. Mills concluded with free trade and the problems it brings.

“Duty for U.S. goods coming to Canada is double what is for Canadian goods going into the U.S.,” he says. “There’s a big gap there.

“Canadian manufacturers have to become more competitive. Automation has done a good job,” he says. “What’s not competitive is the Canadian government.”

He says the government tends to over-react in many situations.

For example, when one industry had a problem with hazardous waste, the government decided all businesses must be regulated, no matter how little it affects that particular company.

Mr. Mills adds that Canadian manufacturers and businessmen must be more innovative than the Americans.

The secret, he says, to penetrating the U.S. market is competitiveness, better organization, better mission statements, the development of a strong business plan, and the ability to stick to that strategic business plan.

 

BUSINESS PROFILE

Perfect pie crusts are now easily achievable with the new Pie Partners

Bakers no longer have to worry about the bubbling and shrinking problems associated with pie making.

by Sylvia Dickens

Fran De Lallo has baked numerous pies for her family, but going into business for herself is a new endeavor. Formerly a secretary, she decided one day there are better ways to earn a living instead of working for someone else.

After raising her children, she returned to John Abbott College in Quebec in 1979 and subsequently, to Concordia University. Supported by her husband, John, a Pennsylvania native, she returned to university where she earned her bachelor's degree in Philosophy.

"I wanted to do something new and challenging," says Ms. De Lallo. "I became self-employed."

A grandmother of 14-month-old twins and mother of three children, Ms. De Lallo has named her company Fasmodea Inc. She was introduced to her first product, Pie Partners, through her husband who had already met and become involved with the person who invented the product.

Charlie Bath, an orphan, was raised by the Franciscan Fathers in Northern England. At16 years of age, Mr. Bath joined the British Merchant Marine where world travel enhanced his culinary interests.

After emigrating to Canada, he became an accomplished baker and used his own kitchen as a testing ground for many recipes and cooking utensils. Eventually, he invented Pie Partners which he took to world-renowned cook, Mme Jehane Benoit in 1987.

"It cooks a crust under, as well as on top, to super perfection," says Ms. De Lallo. "The word 'failure' cannot be applied to this pie plate."

Pie Partners attempts to overcome the attitude that some people do and some people don't have the skill for pastry making. It is geared for domestic bakers, pastry makers, bakers and chefs – everyone from novice to professional.

Made of quality aluminum, Pie Partners is produced by Crown Custom Metal Spinning Inc. of Concord, Ontario.

The two piece pie plate is designed for fast, simple pie shell creation and guarantees superb, golden, crispier crusts with little or no shrinkage. Pie Partners also prevents the pie shell from bubbling and rising unevenly.

The dough is spread across the bottom portion of the pie plate. A second section with its hole design is placed inside the bottom plate and pressed down creating raised bumps in the dough. The plate is then placed in the oven until the pie crust is baked.

Several crusts can be made ahead of time and frozen for use in pies which require pre-baked crusts such as lemon meringue, chocolate cream, raisin nut, strawberry, rhubarb custard and blueberry lemon or for meal pies such as quiche.

 The result is golden, crispier crusts for the busy homemaker.

Pie Partners is a totally Canadian product, from invention to manufacture to distribution.

"We're currently looking at local establishments to carry the product," she says. "Already, it's being distributed in Kingston."

 

TRAVEL

Trinity House: bed and breakfast rates high

By Sylvia Dickens

Gananoque can be proud of its entrepreneurs Jacques O’Shea and Brad Garside, owners of Trinity House.

In 1988, these two Torontonians bought an historic home at 90 Stone St. S., turned it into a country inn and already have received acclaim by the Minister of State and the Canadian and American automobile associations.

When the inn opened in 1989, the Ministry of Tourism brought in two French journalists representing Tourism France. Consequently, Trinity House was selected as “one of the preferred choices for accommodation in the Great Lakes.”

Most recently, Trinity House was added to the Gananoque section of the book, Waterside Escapes—Great Getaways by Lake, River and Sea by Betsy Wittemann and Nancy Webster. It was also featured this month in a travel issue of the impressive Country Home magazine.

The article states that guests like Trinity House because its proprietors are willing to go the extra mile.

It elaborates on the “sumptuous surroundings and tempting fare” and explains that the proprietors will also suggest routes for antiquing or bicycle jaunts, or show the way to the nearest nature trail.

During its short existence, this popular bed and bistro has created summer jobs for four local students, has promoted local business, and has attracted countrywide business people and tourists. Mr. Garside and Mr. O’Shea also hosted Spanish royalty this past May.

What makes the inn so successful?

Recognized by Heritage Canada as an historic country inn, and licensed by the Ministry of Tourism, Trinity House is more than just another inn.

It incorporates six regal suites with their luxury towels and linen, and elegant chandelier-and-tablecloth dining downstairs beside a magnificent marble fireplace.

The rich interior echoes of bygone days with its original wainscotting, unusual three-dimensional ceiling medallions, cornice molding, stairway banister, stained glass window, and sea foam colored walls.

In its days of grandeur in 1859, the building was erected and occupied by Dr. E.L. Atkinson who also founded St. Lawrence Steel and Wire in 1886.

“We’ve made all attempts to bring the house to the 1859 era as it could have been,” says Mr. Garside. “We’ve maintained the historic integrity of the house while adding modern features.”

An “art gallery with international flair” adorns the dining room walls and occupies a large section of the basement, adding to the inn’s uniqueness.

“We’re shipping art all over the world,” says Mr. O’Shea of the work of local artists that is displayed in the gallery. “It’s going to Mexico, Japan, Texas and Europe.”

Outside the inn, a semi-private verandah makes for cool summer lunches while a backyard deck provides the ideal environment for that special get-together for guests of the inn.

In the off season, much of their business comes from getaway weekends by residents of Toronto and Ottawa, and Christmas is soon booked solid, but many locals are unaware of the inn’s accessibility.

“A lot of people don’t realize we’re open to the public for dining,” says Mr. Garside.

Heading into the third season, this will be the first summer they’ve been open for summer evening dining.

“It’s a bistro—not as formal as other dining facilities. It’s European style. Casual elegance and sophistication,” adds Mr. Garside. “Wear up-casual,” he says. “The days of jacket and tie are gone.”

Rather than the usual buffet, overnight guests receive full silver service in the morning to the music of Frank Mills—hot muffins or other fresh baked goods, tea, juice, and fresh fruit.

The rest of the day, the music of Guy Lombardo adds to the calming atmosphere.

Already, these two gentlemen have shown a flair for the hospitality trade, this being the first time they’ve owned this type of establishment. Mr. O’Shea left a job as labor relations manager with the government and Mr. Garside was senior technologist at George Brown College prior to moving to Gananoque three years ago.

“We thought it would be an interesting career change,” says Mr. O’Shea. “We never considered the hours. We thought it would be quieter than Toronto, but it’s exactly the opposite. We’re on our feet 17 hours per day.”

Mr. O’Shea and Mr. Garside continue to make improvements to their establishment and to the service they provide.

OUTDOORS

Take the Road to Adventure

by Sylvia Dickens

Anyone from ages ten to 110 can participate in this unique sport.

Armchair orienteering can be a preview to adventure running, or it can remain an indoor activity. But that’s only part of what makes it unique.

Little athletic ability is necessary. If you can walk, you can orienteer. The cost is minimal. It provides an opportunity to make friends. It’s healthful. It’s a sport that involves the entire family. It’s educational. And it’s entertaining.

“It’s fun,” says 12-year-old Kevin Armstrong who has been orienteering for one year. “You have to make decisions and be oriented all the time because you have to choose which route to take.”

Like the North American Indians and other early civilizations, orienteers make their way through the wilderness using land formations as guides. In the late 1800s, the Swedes or the Swiss (there’s some ongoing argument as to which country was responsible) transformed these skills into a sport called orienteering.

Winnie Stott, organizer of the Aurora orienteering club, Forest Adventures of York, has added another dimension to the sport and called it armchair orienteering.

Beginning January 13, she’ll provide evenings of fun for members. Participants will study different topographical maps then, through a question and answer session, everyone will learn how to read the contours, land formations, distances and heights.

Using her book, Armchair Orienteering, youngsters and adults can work through multiple choice questions on map reading. A series of slides will show orienteers going through an outdoor course while discussions will provide an insight into what they’re thinking. Puzzles and scaled-down models of map sections will assist the learning process.

“It’s designed to get everyone comfortable with maps,” says Stott.

 “Then, we go night orienteering to walk the roads at Seneca College using flashlights. In the spring, it will evolve into weekend outings.”

In winter, many people prefer to stay indoors where it’s warm, but there are others who are willing to brave the elements. In fact, some participants see it as a pleasant way to while away the winter.

“I like orienteering a lot,” says Armstrong. “It’s really challenging and physically demanding. I feel good when I’ve done well on the course, but it’s too cold in winter. Our next real meet starts around May, but it will be better if I start in February to practice,”

“You can see the land better in winter,” Stott points out, “and it’s great for skiing and hiking. Orienteering is an intellectual stimulation and the map gives it purpose.”

Helen Bradstock, her husband, and their two boys are recent addicts.

“I just love it,” she says. “We started last year as wayfarers, walking the trails. It took a long time at first because our youngest, who’s seven, wanted to look at every twig and acorn. Our eldest, who’s nearly ten, has gone on to read maps.”

“Anyone can do it,” she continues. “You don’t need to know how to read a compass. And you don’t have to be that athletic. I have a bad back, so I can’t run. But I have just as much fun.”

When orienteers begin the outdoor portion of the sport, they are taken to a site for which maps are provided. The area is for orienteers to locate orange and white control signs scattered throughout the forest. At each spot, they punch a card to prove they’ve found all the controls, then report back to camp as fast as possible.

“A novice would do well on the white course,” says Stott, “because few skills are necessary there.” During Christmas, the controls were candy canes, gingerbread cookies and hot punch.

“The kids really had a good time,” says Bradstock. “It was much like an Easter egg hunt. It’s too bad more kids aren’t involved. The thing is to make it a game and make it positive.”

As the person develops the ability to match land formations to the special orienteering map, he or she can move up to a more involved route. Although compass skills are necessary, using one can add to the thrill of finding the speediest route to the finish line.

Doing well on the trail brings more than the satisfaction of feeling refreshed and fit.

“Last year, I won a first place ribbon,” says Armstrong, for having the best course time. “I usually go about three kilometers each trip.”

Not finishing first should not be a concern, however.

“It may take one person two hours to run a trail, but another may do it in less,” says Bill Stott, Winnie’s husband and member of the Forest Adventurers of York. “A novice might complete the white course in 20 minutes, while someone else may take half an hour or more. The fun is in participating.

“Some people fear getting lost,” he adds, “but we’ve never had any problems. Besides, everyone is clocked in before they hit the trail, so it’s soon discovered if anyone’s missing. Then, a search party would go out to find them or anyone who might have been injured.

“Yes, I got lost a few times, admits Armstrong, “and went right off the map. I was kind of mad at myself for getting lost. Frustrated, really. But I just backtracked and picked up the trail again.”

The real emphasis is that it’s a family thing.

“You can go at any age, any level,” says Ms. Stott. “Orienteering isn’t something you send the kids to. You meet other families, make friends from all walks of life. Our kids are now pen pals with a Swedish family.”

The Stott family expect to continue their wilderness hikes for many years to come.

Tracking treasure in the great

outdoors offers unexpected rewards

by Sylvia Dickens

That’s the thrill of geocaching, a new pastime that’s sweeping North America and is currently active in 177 countries. Entire families have discovered the many pleasures and rewards of this leisure activity.

“I can do this,” Brian Mlynek told himself after his first few outings. One year later, he and his five-year-old daughter, Emily, have racked up 67 finds in the Greater Toronto Area and beyond.

“My brother and I feel that we have been introduced to some very unique areas… places we never knew about,” says John Fudalik of New York State who has logged 711 finds, including one of his favorites—a multi-cache that involved a tour of Toronto Island.

Using a Global Positioning System (GPS) to download coordinates from satellites, participants are searching specific locations in cities, parks and the country for caches that have been hidden by other participants. These caches contain treasures such as novelty items, small toys, coins, puzzles and much more. Virtual caches lead geocachers to spectacular scenery, history markers and other landmarks.

“It’s not the treasure,” says Mr. Mlynek, who goes by the name DirtRunner. “It’s an end to a means. It’s a good excuse to get away from everything.” Admittedly goal-oriented, he says he needs a “reason” to go to the park, and geocaching provides it.

Competition, challenge and adventure are among the most common reasons people of all ages and fitness levels are participating in this increasingly popular sport. Although the focus of geocaching is to find the cache with the aid of a GPS, often the real reward is the unexpected landmarks that not only please the eye; they inform and educate.

Spiderkid’s mom and her male friend got involved after he stumbled over a cache while walking the dog in his favorite park a year ago. Inside the box was information on geocaching and the name of a web site. After researching the site, they decided it would be an ideal activity for them and their children, who range in age from three years to 13 years, and their three dogs.

“It’s an adventure and it’s fun with the kids,” says Teresa Samuel of Toronto, Ontario. She adds that it provides an incentive for the children to get out for a walk in the local parks. Her 8-year-old son James, who goes by the name Spiderkid, is a keen participant and has hidden several of his own caches for people to find.

For her friend, Allan Walker, geocaching fits with his interests in the outdoors and hiking. They both enjoy the challenge of being first to find newly placed caches. Like last winter when they slogged through a blizzard in the middle of the night to find a new cache near Peterborough, Ontario.

“When we saw footprints in the snow, we figured someone beat us to it,” he says, “but it wasn’t a geocacher.” Arriving back home at 1:00 a.m., they were first to log the find on the geocaching web site.

One of their favorite caches was a spud hunt. A series of caches, called a multi-cache, used parts of the Mr. Potato Head toy. The first cache held six torsos, the next cache had five legs, the next had four mouths and so on. The last cache contained one final piece to complete the figure. Only the first person to the end could win this competition. This cache offered the challenge of locating each cache with the GPS, as well as a race to the end.

A truly unique cache that caught their attention was one that operated like a used car lot, where people brought toy cars to exchange for different models.

Allwalk’s 13-year-old son, Calvin, enjoys geocaching too. Being a coin collector, he often finds them in caches. The most unusual are Canadian coins minted to celebrate confederation in 1967. One features a rabbit, another a fish, and another a cougar. He also has found quarters from Indiana and subway tokens from New York City.

Locating a cache using a GPS sounds easy, but obstacles such as tall trees, high cliffs and overhead bridges can deflect the satellite signal. DirtRunner was tested when he tried to locate a cache that had been hidden under a bridge. An added challenge is the GPS reading, which cannot be 100 per cent accurate, and is usually off by at least 10 meters depending on the landscape.

“Each outing is different,” he says. His most memorable took him and his daughter to the top of a cliff with an amazing view across a ravine. “It was a wonderful trip.” Another cache took him up and down hills, ending at a site that overlooked a snow-covered valley.

Other caches are unique in their own rite. Virtual caches direct seekers to things such as signs that contain clues to a quiz. At a multi-level cache last winter, DirtRunner shivered in the icy wind while trying to solve a jigsaw puzzle in order to get the coordinates to the next cache.

Travel bugs add another fun dimension to the sport.

These aren’t the pesky insects that irritate. Travel bugs are numbered metal strips that are given a specific destination by the travel bug owner. DirtRunner attached a toy figurine to one, called it The Professor, and posted it on the geocaching web site, asking that it find its way to The Forbidden City in China. He dropped it into one of his own caches on September 24 and it arrived in China in January. It had traveled 11,107 miles in approximately four months.

While out geocaching near Whitby, Ontario recently, DirtRunner found the School Bus Travel Bug. When he looked it up on the web site, he discovered that it had been launched in Pennsylvania, was destined for Newfoundland, and had traveled 476 miles so far.

John Fudalik of New York State has been an avid geocacher since its inception approximately five years ago. He enjoys the hunt, the walks and the hiking. One cache that stands out for him was near a waterfall that has a natural gas leak behind it and is lit in a grotto.

Some specialized or theme caches he’s found include paperback books, Irish items, a CD music exchange, red items, and Christmas things.

“My brother collects foreign coins, and we find quite a lot of these, too,” he says.

Mr. Fudalik has posted a virtual cache that provides a tour of his hometown of Honeoye Falls, New York. Geocachers travel to about 20 locations in the village and complete a crossword puzzle that’s on the geocache web site to arrive at the final answer.

Another virtual takes geocachers to a unique geological landmark. Drivers park their vehicle on the hill and instead of rolling down as expected, it is drawn uphill, similar to Magnetic Hill in New Brunswick.

Allwalk and Teresa enjoy a variety of caches. Recently, one with a history theme took them to a local cemetery where they learned about an important event in Toronto’s history. A geological oddity was a virtual cache that led them to a science display illustrating the earth’s plate movements.

What would a geocacher want to make his experience complete?

Allwalk and Teresa say their most ideal cache would take them to beautiful, new and interesting spots they’d not discover otherwise.

DirtRunner’s ultimate cache would be a multi-cache leading to a master cache that contained a bigger prize.

Mr. Fudalik and his brother, Larry, have taken geocaching to the next stage and have developed seminars, complete with overheads, that they present to hiking groups in their area. During their talk, they relate some of their adventures in geocaching.

“We were hoping that the purchase of a GPS unit could add a little more to the outdoor walk these folks take,” he says.

Geocaching can be as easy or as difficult as anyone could want, from the easiest that are suitable for children to find at their local parkette, to extreme caches such as one in a volcano in Ethiopia and four in Antarctica.

To get more information, geocache listings can be found on several web sites that are dedicated to the sport. One of the biggest sites is www.geocaching.com or search for 'geocaching' in your favorite browser. Memberhip is free and even on days you can't get out, you can enjoy the postings of others who have taken up the challenge.

ENTERTAINMENT

Liona Boyd strums up a storm

to an appreciative audience

BY SYLVIA DICKENS

Captivating — the best word to aptly describe Liona Boyd’s performance to a packed Grace United Church Monday evening.

The award-winning classical guitarist held the audience spellbound for two hours as she strummed, plucked, picked and slapped her acoustical guitar to deliver music by such well-known writers as Claude DeBussy, Eric Satie and Richard Fortin.

Her program included Chinatown, a lively tune by Richard Fortin which she delivered with emphasis using a variety of ear-pleasing techniques. The audience was quick to respond with rousing applause.

It set the tone for the evening as she continued to win the hearts of her onlookers.

Morning Sun Dance was lively and inspiring. La Gitane gave ample opportunity for her delicate strumming emphasized by heavy chording to this Spanish piece.

Each selection was stirring and captivating.

During renditions of such pieces as her own Serenade for Summer, some onlookers shook their heads in amazement at her ability to interpret the music with consummate skill.

The beautiful sounds she was able to create with her guitar drew smiles and rounds of applause from her admirers. By intermission, their applause brought the house down.

As Ms. Boyd played Lullaby from San Ysidro Suite during the second half of the program, some people closed their eyes to capture the soothing music while others sat with their gazes transfixed on her agile fingers.

Often during her concert, the only sound that could be heard in the stifling church building, despite programs being fanned was her resonating guitar.

At one point in the last half of the performance, Ms. Boyd proclaimed, “The last time I was ever this hot on stage was when I played Istanbul.” The understanding audience laughed.

She continued to win her audience as the end drew near. Then, when she bowed over her guitar for the last time, thanked her audience and left the stage, the standing ovation brought her back for an encore.

To the delight of onlookers, she performed the beautiful Recuerdos by De la Alhambra.

Later, fans lined up for her autograph which she kindly gave with her winning smile and friendly comments.

By 11 p.m., the church was empty.

Still ahead of Ms. Boyd was a long drive back to Toronto, yet she graciously took a moment to pose for this reporter.

Wednesday, she would be heading on to her next performance in Nova Scotia and St. Pierre Michelon.

Fans of Ms. Boyd will be glad to know she’s releasing her new record of contemporary music in October entitled, Dancing on the Edge.

England-born, Ms. Boyd has won worldwide acclaim for her innovative and pleasing works which embrace not only classical style, but also pop, Latin and soft rock.

A whole new world opened up for Ms. Boyd when she was 14 years old and her parents granted her request for a guitar for Christmas. Since then, she’s never looked back.

She mastered the instrument after she heard English guitarist, Julian Bream, and received tutoring from Eli Kassner and private artists like Narcisco Yepes, Andres Segovia and Alirio Diaz.

Ms. Boyd completed her Bachelor of Music Degree in Performance at the University of Toronto where she graduated with honors and won first prize in the Canadian National Music Competition.

After completing two years of private study with Alexandre Lagoya in Paris, she returned to North America and recorded her first album. Her debut at Carnegie Hall received rave reviews and the New York Times praised her “flair for brilliance.”

This First Lady of the Guitar has played private concerts to dozens of world leaders including Fidel Castro, the British Royal Family, the King and Queen of Spain, the President of the United States, the Prime Ministers of Canada and Britain, the Chancellor of Germany as well as at NATO and Summit Conferences.

Ms. Boyd has participated in numerous fundraisers and charity concerts for causes she believes in and continues to take her music to appreciative audiences everywhere.

SPORTS

Alyn McCauley shocks local scouts, makes game M.V.P.

BY SYLVIA DICKENS

If Alyn McCauley is drafted into the O.H.L in June, he can be playing in the N.H.L. by 1995, says Voyageurs coach Jim White.

“The scouts were all impressed with him,” he says. “There’s a strong possibility he’ll be the first player taken in the O.H.L. draft. “If he continues to improve, I cannot see him playing in the O.H.L. more than one year,” he adds.

Mr. McCauley impressed O.H.L. and N.H.L. scouts last Wednesday when he played in the Metro Junior “A” Allstar Classic in Toronto. With three goals and one assist, he earned the Most Valuable Player Award of the game and on his team, the Bauer Allstars. They defeated the Fullan Allstars 9-2.

The 5-ft. 11-in., 184 lb. Centre says the game left him on a two-hour high, knowing he’d met, even surpassed, his own high standards.

“I was on such a high from the game, I didn’t blink until we stopped to eat in Trenton,” he says.

Today, the excitement returns whenever he discusses the game which, it appears, is the turning point in his career.

The game, he says, began at a fast pace but he had little difficulty keeping up.

“It seems we were all over them,” he says. “They couldn’t get anything started. All we needed was a spark and we were off.”

Although laid back during the trip to Toronto, he admits to some nervousness when he first arrived at the rink, knowing the scouts would be there. Ten minutes on the ice and the nervousness subsided.

“It was great. I got a goal right away,” he says. “It calmed my nerves and relaxed me.

“A player who is nervous doesn’t make good decisions,” he adds.

The first goal came around the mid point of the first period. Throughout the game, the Fullan Allstars played three goaltenders. The first one let in Mr. McCauley’s goal.

“He played extremely well,” Mr. McCauley admits. “I only had one chance at him. The second goalie I caught off guard.”

A team mate chipped him the puck and he chipped it into the net on a power play. In the third period, he got an assist to top his game.

Lessons Learned

The biggest lesson for Mr. McCauley was realizing he can play at the Allstar level.

“I was happy just to keep up with them,” he says. “But it was better than I ever dreamed. Better than I ever wanted. I was in a daze, It was unbelievable. I was glad I had my family there to share it with me.”

He says playing the Allstars raised his game to a different level which forced him to play better, more consistently. When it was over, he was all energy and enthusiasm.

“I knew there would be a lot of physical stuff in the game,” he continues. “It normally tires you out by the second period. But most players were trying to show off their scoring skills. That’s why we got a score of 9-2.”

Gretzky Luck

Mr. McCauley went into the game determined to do the best he could. This he achieved by “letting it flow.”

He says he didn’t do anything differently, but says one of his team mates compared him to Wayne Gretzky.

“It was weird during the first and second periods,” he explains. “One player kept pointing at me and laughing. Later, he said he thought I was Gretzky because the puck kept coming to me. Many of the other players couldn’t believe I scored three goals.

His parents, Donna and Dan, couldn’t be happier with their son’s performance.

“We’re really proud,” says his father. “He’s worked really hard. A lot of credit goes to his coach, Rick Small.”

Coach’s View

Voyageurs coach Jim White says it’s great to have a player with Mr. McCauley’s capabilities.

“When you watch him, it’s hard to believe he’s only 15,” he says. “He does so many things well that a lot of 20-year-olds can’t. And he does them instinctively. He sees the ice well. What sets him apart is the things he can do with the puck at top speeds. Other players slow down, but he keeps up the speed.

“It’s his greatest attribute,” he adds. “He’s a dominant player. Don Cherry is always pumping Kingston players. In a few years, Alyn McCauley is going to put Gananoque on the map.”

When Mr. McCauley gets drafted, he’ll be making history.

“He’ll be the youngest drafted under-age. For an under-age player to go number one overall, that’s really something,” Mr. White concludes.

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