Horse Checks Into Toronto Hotel For Grey Cup Because Canada
The 104th Grey Cup is Sunday and the Calgary Stampeders are involved, so of course you're going to see a horse check in to a nice suite at a fine hotel. Calgary takes on the Ottawa Redblacks at Toronto's BMO Field at 3:30 p.m. (ET), Calgary's 15th appearance in the CFL championship game, and Ottawa's second.
Marty the horse arrived early today with his entourage (two ponies and a goat), and entered the lobby of the Holiday Inn Toronto with no problems. He was even presented with a bouquet of carrots and tomatoes. It's a tradition that dates to 1948 -- every Calgary team that makes the Grey Cup is accompanied by its mascot horse, who christens the game by entering a hotel and dumping on the rug.
This horse, however, is a stand-in for the regular mascot, Tuffy, who is too old to travel.
In 2012, the last time the Grey Cup was in Toronto, Marty showed up at the Royal York, who refused to let him in. So he mingled downtown -- including a visit to the Bank of Montreal -- until they finally relented. This is true.
This year Marty was greeted with a bagpipe band and of course complimentary shampoo.
The Stampeders (15-2-1) are favorites led by QB Bo Levi Mitchell, a Katy, TX, native who played at Eastern Washington. Calgary also has RB Jerome Messam (Graceland University) and sacks leader (16) Charleston Hughes (Northwood University).
Ottawa (8-9-1) is led by 41-year-old QB Henry Burris, who set several passing records at Temple and actually played for the Stampeders in the '90s. He had brief stints with the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears, and in NFL Europe.
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