I’ve been to the rink twice this season and, while I’ve never been to a game at the arena, I’ve seen some of the players there.
Kendall Ice Arena is a state-of-the-art hockey arena in downtown Seattle.
It’s owned and operated by the City of Seattle and opened in October.
It opened to the public on a Saturday afternoon and was packed, with many of the fans heading to see the first home game of the season against the Anaheim Ducks.
The arena’s fans, in particular, have been vocal about wanting to see more hockey in Seattle.
So when I asked a few of the people I talked to to about what the future of hockey in the area was, I was struck by the passion they had for the sport and the city.
“It would be nice if it were closer to home,” one person said.
“But that’s a big issue.”
There’s been a lot of talk in recent years about what will happen to hockey in South Seattle.
In 2014, a group of South Seattle residents began the #BringBackTheHockey campaign to bring back the NHL, and after a year-long campaign that resulted in some minor league teams being brought in, the city has officially accepted that the NHL will remain in South King County.
The arena has been a key part of South King City’s hockey heritage for years.
It’s been the home of the Vancouver Canucks for more than 40 years.
That arena was home to the NHL’s first expansion franchise, the Vancouver Giants, who won the Stanley Cup in 1963.
Then, in 1981, it was home for the Vancouver Canadians and the Vancouver Monarchs, the two teams that won the Western Hockey League title that year.
As the years passed, South King became the home for professional hockey, as well as the home to a few NHL franchises.
There was the Vancouver Mariners in 1995 and a team in the NHL in the late 1990s, but hockey wasn’t a big part of the landscape until around 2000, when the Vancouver Sharks came to town.
South King’s hockey community has grown over the years and now there are about a dozen professional teams in the city, but the arena is still in use as a home for some local hockey teams.
“The arena is an important part of our community,” said Steve Faggan, a longtime South King resident who works as a manager for a local real estate company.
“We are a hockey town and we’ve always loved the sport.”
Faggan said that he was surprised by the level of support that the arena received from the city of South Vancouver when he arrived there to work in the arena in 2000.
He said the arena was already a home base for South Seattle’s hockey teams and fans, and the support from the team owners helped make it a better place to play the game.
“We’ve always been a hockey city, we’ve had the Islanders, the Canucks, the Kings, and we have a great hockey tradition,” Faggin said.
Fagsons wife and children have been playing hockey at the facility for decades, and he said that the support of the hockey community from the owners has been incredible.
“[The arena owners] are a lot more than just fans,” Fagson said.
“(They) have been a really supportive group.”
In the end, Faggans wife and kids are still going to play hockey.
“They’re playing hockey now,” he said.
He said he was glad that the team ownership group has recognized that the game needs to continue to thrive in South Washington, especially in South Lake Union, where the arena sits.
That sentiment resonates with some of South Lake City’s residents, as they’ve been vocal in calling for a return to the old NHL.
Mike LeBrun, a retired firefighter, said that hockey needs to be more accessible to people in South Bay.
For LeBruc, the arena and the people who work at it have made the community that much more diverse.
“I would say that it’s been amazing,” he told Engadge.
“The support from everybody has been amazing.
I just hope it’s not to the point where we’re not here.”
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