Chronicles of Stanley: Hockey’s Holy Grail, high above Yosemite

The Chronicles of Stanley is an occasional series this summer that tracks the Boston Bruins as they each get their special alone time with the Stanley Cup.

Reason No. 44,141 Why The Stanley Cup Rules: When it comes to your humble little part of the world, it's an event, like the arrival of a dignitary. No one is writing preview stories about the travels of the Lombardi Trophy or that heinous basketball paperweight that LeBron so cravenly grasped in those promotional photos; but in Fresno, Calif., the arrival of the Cup was a happening.

On Friday, the Cup came to Mariposa, a town on the route to Yosemite National Park. The Jacobs family owns both the champion Boston Bruins and Delaware North Corporation, which runs the majority of Yosemite's concessions. So they decided to bring Stanley to the people of Mariposa County, many of whom work for their company.

From Sean Lynch of the Merced Sun-Star:

Sporting NHL jerseys from all over the country and a couple from Canada, an excited group of almost 80 people lined up to get their pictures taken with the famed Cup and to swap stories with its keeper, Mike Bolt.

The group got an added bonus of catching up with one of their own as Mariposa High grad Alex Cann also accompanied the Cup.

The Boston Garden employee was on vacation when she got the call to make a detour in Mariposa.

"We were driving back from San Diego when we found out this was going to happen," Cann said. "There's so many people that work with the NHL that will never get the opportunity to see the Stanley Cup, so this is a special day for Mariposa.

"I'm happy to be a part of it and to get to share it with people that I've known all my life."

Again, it's one of the magical things about the Cup: The way small communities treat it (and the players who win it) as something extraordinary, as a moment that needs to be chronicled. Locals stand in line for photos, hold pep rallies at local community centers and even throw parades. For all the talk about high-priced athletes and tickets leaving the common fan behind, these moments always form such a quaint bond with fans on a micro level.

These visits also leap to wonderful "what's the Stanley Cup doing there?" moments, like the Chalice at Glacier Point.

Everything was going just fine … until the Yeti attack. Mike Bolt killed three with his bare hands.

Photo up top via HockeyBruin.

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