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Steve and Tammy Boucher, married 11 years, will compete for the chance to renew their vows. (/Union Leader)

Valentine's Day contest putting love at center ice


MANCHESTER — One lucky couple will have a Valentine's Day to remember and get to renew their wedding vows on center ice during the Manchester Monarchs game Friday night.

First, the two couples selected as finalists will have to compete for the honor. The feat? A Lady and the Tramp-style doughnut-eating contest during the first period, when the Monarchs host the Worcester Sharks at the Verizon Wireless Arena.

The Monarchs, WZID and Bellman Jewelers created the "Twice as Nice on Ice" contest to touch the hearts of the women and men who love hockey.

"This is pretty much the best Valentine's Day idea ever," laughed Steve Boucher of Pembroke, a Monarchs fan since the first game. "My wife will tell you she's a Monarchs fan, and a Monarchs widow."

He pitched the idea to Tammy, his wife of 11 years, whom he described as the glue that holds their hockey family together.

They will vie for the vows with SallyAnn and Marc Trepanier of Merrimack, whose first date was at a Utica Devils hockey game. They have been married 25 years.

Both couples are 20-game season ticketholders.

This Valentine's Day will be a time to "share our love of hockey," said SallyAnn Trepanier. "I've never seen anything on the ice like this before," she said. "It'll be fun. Probably a little bit nervous — I don't really know what to expect."

The couple that emerges victorious from the Lady and the Tramp doughnut contest will also get a pair of diamond and ruby stud earrings, valued at $2,500, courtesy of Bellman Jewelers.

Couples had a week to submit entries saying why they should be chosen for the honor. The staff at the Monarchs and Bellman's narrowed the contestants to five finalists. Photos and stories of each were posted on Bellman's Facebook page for a week until the two couples with the most likes were selected.

WZID's Mike Morin will officiate. As a former wedding DJ, he is familiar with the subject matter. He's also a justice of the peace, though, technically, a JP is unnecessary because the couple will be renewing their vows, he says.

The minister of mirth promises to make the vows more slapstick than slap shot.

"I'm going to inject a little humor into the vows," said Morin, hinting that he has in mind a little adaptation of "The Newlywed Game."

To have and to hold, in sickness and in hockey, 'til sudden death do us part?

Stay tuned: Game time is 7 p.m.

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