Centre Ice Arena has been home to the Detroit Red Wings training camp and NHL prospect tournament for 19 years. This year, the NHL implemented some safety standards for any rink that hosts events involving NHL players. These changes will require the Traverse City arena to make some extensive and expensive renovations to their two rinks. The total cost would be to the tune of $220,000.
“When we learned that the cost of renovation was $110,000 per rink, we thought our days of hosting Red Wings Training Camp and NHL Prospect Tournament were over,” said Terry Marchand, Executive Director of I.C.E., the non-profit organization of Centre Ice Arena. However, when Traverse City Tourism got wind of what was happening, they decided to make a generous financial contribution. They see is as “an investment in community benefit”.
And that’s really what it is. An arena is more than just a springboard for future NHL players, it’s a community centre that brings young and old together around the game of hockey. For Traverse City, Centre Ice Arena provides a safe, healthy, enjoyable and nurturing environment for young people, something that is critical for their growth and development. Attracting events like the Red Wings training camp is important to this community, which is why they decided to step it up when they heard of the renovations.
“When word first got out that training camp and prospect tournament might not return to Traverse City, we heard loud and clear from the community and Red Wings fans that these events must come back. Many people asked how they could donate to make it happen,” said Tricia Frey, Marketing Director.
That’s where the idea of crowdfunding the remaining funds came from. While Traverse City Tourism’s contribution was a hefty one, I.C.E. still has $110,000 to go.
If you’d like to make a financial contribution to support the Traverse City community and help keep the Red Wings training camp at its home, I.C.E. has made GivingGrid the home of their crowdfunding campaign. Click here to donate.
In addition to crowdfunding, I.C.E. is hosting two events to aid in their fundraising campaign. The first is called Sticks & Skates for I.C.E. with open skating on one rink and sticks & pucks on the other this Sunday, April 29 from 11:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M. Skate rental and lunch is included in admission. The second is the annual Centre Ice Golf Outing at Interlochen Golf Course on Saturday, June 2. For more information on both events, including how you can get involved, visit www.centreice.org.
The renovation project will begin on Monday, May 14 and will take approximately three weeks to complete. The Wings are committed to bringing back their events for multiple years if the rink upgrades can get done. We at WingsNation.com ask that you join us in supporting this Michigan community. We’ve donated already. Have you?