ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — IceHogs hockey is nearly here, and the team’s upgraded arena is almost complete.
Fans will be greeted with a new look when they file into the BMO Harris Bank Center, 300 Elm St, this season.
“We are putting the icing on the cake, literally,” said Gretchen Gilmore, the General Manager of the BMO Harris Bank Center. “We are laying our final sheet of ice for the season. Today is a big day, the ice is getting painted, and all the logos are going down.”
Gilmore said that people can look forward to all the new renovations, worth $16.5 million.
“As people approach the new box office, they should be able to see two huge LED exterior digital boards right above the box office,” Gilmore said. “Inside the arena, they will see hand railings in the 200 level and a new premium suite on the third floor.”
It is an exciting time for the Rockford IceHogs as well, as they begin their new chapter under the ownership of the Chicago Blackhawks.
“For the IceHogs, this is our 23rd season, so we’re excited to join communities and organizations, and it’s been a busy summer, but it’s been an exciting one,” said Joseph Zakrzewski, the Broadcast and Marketing Manager for the IceHogs. “So it’s not just the hockey here at the BMO, it’s our youth hockey programs, it’s our community efforts rebuilding and visiting school programs, it’s going to grow far beyond from what we’ve been able to do from before.”
Zakrzewski said that this new partnership will enhance the experience of watching a game.
“As the IceHogs began the season on the road, and the renovations happening at the BMO, it gives us plenty of time to get ready for that home opener on the 6th and 7th,” Zakrewski said. “So, to have that opening night, it’s our 23rd season in the Stateline, but at the same time it feels like a brand new year full of optimism and excitement.”
All concession stands are going cashless, and fans need to continue to wear masks, as the statewide indoor mask mandate is still in place. BMO officials also encourage people to get there early to avoid any headaches.
The home opener is November 6.