Panini America Winner Spends Memorable Day with Canucks Keeper Cory Schneider

June 07, 2012

Now that is how you spend a day with an NHL player.

As the grand prize winner in Panini America’s 2012 NHL Player of the Day promotion, Boston-area collector David Almeida earned the right to spend last Sunday with Vancouver Canucks goalie and fellow Boston native Cory Schneider. But it’s safe to say that Almeida got way more than he bargained for from the burgeoning NHL superstar who proved to be just as impressive off the ice than he is on it.

The sunny Sunday started at the Almeida family home in Southbridge, Mass., when Schneider arrived — early — for a private party that included, among other things, filming a special episode of Panini Unwrapped, candidly answering questions and even an impromptu game of street hockey, easily the day’s highlight.

From there, the party took the waiting limo to nearby L/J Sportscards, Almeida’s local hobby shop, where Schneider signed autographs for and interacted with more than 150 fans before Almeida enjoyed the $250 Panini America shopping spree that was part of his grand prize.

As you’ll see in the video and gallery that follow, Schneider did a tremendous job every step of the way, starting with arriving early, meaningfully interacting with party guests, busting packs (even pulling his own card from a box of 2011-12 Elite Hockey) and joining an impromptu game of street hockey behind the Almeida house.

Schneider was just as phenomenal at L/J’s, putting customers at ease and introducing himself to every autograph-seeker with an extended handshake and a warm smile that suggested he was genuinely having a great time.

Judging by the images and video that follow, it looks like everyone had a great time.

Now, the must-see video documenting Schneider’s visit and a day that Almeida will likely never forget.