Vancouver’s Canucks are a case-in-point. The team plays its home games in cozy Rogers Arena, a facility that opened for business fifteen years ago on September 21, 1995. From the very beginning, the hard-skating Canucks became fan favorites. While not always successful on the ice, their stellar efforts always produced strong attendance figures.
Rogers Arena, which got its name in 2010 from the current owner, Rogers Communications, after having been known as General Motors Place for fifteen years, has a seating capacity that is lower than what is available in virtually all other National Hockey League arenas.
The Vancouver Canucks are the building’s only tenant that sold out crowd for any hockey game, which peaks at 18,910. Concerts, a mainstay for this arena, can put as many as 19,000 music-loving fans in seats.
The professional hockey team was not always the sole tenant operating in Rogers Arena. The Vancouver Grizzlies, a National Basketball Association (NBA) franchise, played home games here from 1995 through 2001.
Another former tenant is the Vancouver Ravens of the National Lacrosse League (NLL). They played home games at Rogers Arena from 2001-2004.
There have been many compelling sports events in Rogers Arena during its still brief fifteen year existence. In 1998, the National Lacrosse League All Star game drew a large and appreciative crowd.
Interestingly, the National Hockey League All Star game was played in the same arena, also before a large crowd of excited and animated fans in the same year.
In 2001, Rogers Arena hosted the World Figure Skating Championship and in the 2010 Winter Olympics ice hockey found a home at this western Canadian arena.
Of course, musical events play a big role in the economic life of any North American arena. So it should surprise no one that such well-known artists as Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Shania Twain, Andrea Bocelli and Lady GaGa have enthralled thousands of fans in concerts that sold out almost as quickly as tickets were put on sale.
It seems likely that Rogers Arena will continue to be a magnet that draws the residents of Vancouver to its gates on a regular basis throughout the remainder of this year and for many years to come.
Hot summer breezes, cold wintry blasts, heavy snow or pounding rain may annoy some locals, but will never deter residents from the entertainment they crave and enjoy.
Whether that entertainment takes the form of a professional hockey game or a musical extravaganza, people in this western Canada mini-metropolis will pay their way in to watch and enjoy the show.
image courtesy of vancouversun.com