Centre Ice Begins Rink Renovations

TRAVERSE CITY – Traverse City’s Centre Ice Arena began renovations on Monday to keep the Detroit Red Wings’ training camp and other NHL events in northern Michigan.

The facility is replacing the current tempered glass with acrylic glass and installing a cap rail system with built-in shock absorbers, curved glass at the benches and safety netting for both its rinks.

The renovations will cost $220,000, with an additional $20,000 annually in maintenance fees and are mandated by the NHL for any facility that hosts NHL teams.

“We didn’t want to lose that,” Centre Ice Arena executive director Terry Marchand said of the training camp. “That’s a big fundraiser for us obviously, and the Red Wings love coming here. The prospect tournament teams love coming here. Traverse City treats them, all of them, like kings, and they don’t want to go anywhere else. You know, the Red Wings just built their new stadium and the NHL teams that are part of our prospect tournament told Ken Holland, “We’re not going down there. Keep it in Traverse City,” so we take a lot of pleasure, a lot of pride in doing what we’ve been doing for 20 years now, and we’re pretty good at it.”

Upon completion, Centre Ice will be one of the few public facilities in the country to feature enhancements that will provide a safer environment for fans and athletes.

“We’re hoping we can get really get each rink done in about seven or eight days, so we’re hoping to be done by the beginning June,” Marchand said. “We have to have them done by them because we have activity in both rinks going.

“We’ve got all our activity on one rink for the next couple weeks, and uh once we get done here, we’ll switch over to that rink. We’ll open this rink back up for our regular activities.”

With the NHL Prospect Tournament also returning to Centre Ice, the Detroit Red Wings and other participating NHL teams will be contributing funds to the construction project.

While there are investments from Traverse City Tourism and NHL teams, more money will be required to fully fund the renovations.

To donate to the project, visit https://www.centreice.org/givinggrid