A day-long celebration for Port Elgin's favourite 'Superfan'
by Sandy Lindsay

December 21, 2015

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Vi Cottrill

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Vi Cottrill turned 80 on December 19th amidst a sea of pink, her favourite colour, and it was a day that would turn out to be a day-long celebration for the community's favourite 'superfan'.

The celebration began with a tea held at Port Elgin United Church where more than 100 guests turned out to bring birthday wishes.

Mayor Mike Smith presented a special certificate

Those who came to say 'Happy Birthday' were of all ages.  From the very young to the young-at-heart, all those who have played any kind of sport in Saugeen Shores, know Vi Cottrill because she very rarely misses a game, whether it's baseball, bowling or hockey. 

Throughout the decades, she has been presented with team trophies and individual player medals.  Those who attended the tea were amazed to see that she had kept each of the hundreds of medals she had been given along with all the trophies.

Medals and trophies given over the decades

From tea time, it was then game time in the evening as she came out to watch her favourite Saugeen Shores Winterhawks WOAA Sr. Men's team play.  As she has on past birthdays, Vi dropped the ceremonial puck after being escorted on to the ice by the team Captain and then was presented with her own special chair.

Following the first period of play, fans had the chance to personally wish her a happy birthday and enjoy Tim Hortons' doughnuts provided by the Winterhawks for everyone in the arena.

Vi with a doughnut in her favourite Winterhawks team colours

For decades she has watched young players grow up in a sport and now watches as their grandchildren and children become involved.

Her phenomenal memory is a data bank of jersey numbers, names and statistics.  She knows when teams are playing and who they are playing and what the final score is ... long after the games are over. 

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Vi and her sister, Wilma, grew up in Port Elgin on a small farm owned by their grandparents on Lake Range Road in Port Elgin (Saugeen Shores).

Vi and sister, Wilma

Today, Vi Cottrill has become a steadfast integral part of the community where everyone recognizes her.  She volunteers at Elgin Lodge retirement living centre, attends church faithfully, helps at the annual Christmas Eve dinner at Living Hope Church in Port Elgin, is a part of the Rail Trail Association volunteers and is seen daily walking throughout the community.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2015