[PHOTOS] Quebec pee-wee tournament: a semblance of normal life for little Ukrainians

[PHOTOS] Tournament pee-wee de Québec: a semblance of normal life for small Ukrainians


Hockey training, evenings at the restaurant, activities of all kinds… The war is far from the minds of the young people of the Ukrainian pee-wee hockey team who finally taste a semblance of “normal life”. 

“Being here as a team, it allows them to forget all that [the conflict in Ukraine] a bit”, underlines in English the coach -team leader, Evgheniy Pysarenko, met at La Cage de Lebourgneuf. 

It has been impossible to get a smile from the faces of his players since their arrival in Quebec last Wednesday, after a host of adventures for repatriate everyone. 

Supported by families of volunteers who organize a wide range of activities for them to introduce them to life in Quebec between their two daily hockey practices, they simply do not have time to breathe.

“They are overexcited, but it is my role to keep them focused on our upcoming matches. We still came here to show what we are capable of!” says Mr. Pysarenko, with a smirk. 

Several activities

On Saturday, the pee-wee were treated to an all-inclusive meal at La Cage de Lebourgneuf before going to see a Remparts game in the evening. The bomb warning sirens gave way to the goal-scoring sirens.  

“They wanted to experience a typical Quebec sports restaurant, so I didn't hesitate to invite you!” says Philippe Laroche, restaurant owner. 'did not start.

“We love it here, everyone is nice to us, but we find it a bit cold. We've never had -40 degrees in Ukraine,” laughs the young Oleksii Bondarchuk, who would still like to visit the Carnaval de Québec despite the cold.

Fries, sauce and cheese 

After hockey, the cold and the hospitality of Quebecers, the immersive experience of young hockey players could not be complete without them tasting our famous national dish. An excellent dish of “fries, gravy and cheese”. 

The word “poutine” is banned around the team because of its similarity to the name of the Russian President.

“We are really careful not to remind them of the atrocities of war, but we are going to organize ourselves so that they taste it! The coaches told us that they can't wait to try it,” says François Robert, one of the volunteers who host two young hockey players and who organize the outings.