Skating in Stilettos

A Hockey Blog by Kristy Lynn

Hockey Arenas

Wells Fargo Center | Philadelphia

Well kids, I survived my first Philadelphia Flyers game.   I attended a division rivalry matinee against the NY Islanders on March 23, 2019.  Unfortunately for Flyers fans, the match up ended in a 4-2 Islanders victory. The arena is pretty easy to get to and shares a massive parking lot with Citizens Bank Park and Lincoln Financial Field.  Philadelphia is the only city where all four major sports play in the same complex.  I parked near Xfinity Live, which is described as “a dining and entertainment complex”. I didn’t explore the building, but can tell you that fans were filtering in and out before and after the game.
I entered Wells Fargo Center and walked right into the Cure Insurance Club, which opens two hours before the game. A bustling bar filled with hockey fans and live music greeted me once I walked past security.  After seeing so many people sporting the orange jersey I have to agree with my girl Elle Woods that whoever said orange was the new pink was seriously disturbed.Security allows fans to head down to the glass for pregame warm ups.  Once I grabbed a good viewing spot I soaked in my surroundings.  The arena opened in 1996, and while its not new it is well maintained.  The ceilings are covered with banners for the 76ers and Flyers with the jumbotron dividing the teams.  The music that echoed around the arena during warm ups was probably my favorite part of the experience.  Anytime I can combine hockey and The Fresh Prince of Bel Air theme song I’m all about it! I caught myself dancing around to remixes of my favorite rock songs as well.

The concourses are filled with a variety of food and drink selections that include gluten free options. I am going to tell you the only two options that need to be on your radar are Shake Shack and Chick-Fil-A… yes you read that last sentence correctly there is a Chick-Fil-A within the arena! The Flyers Organization did a great job with their opening.  They play a rock version of Phil Collins “In the Air Tonight” which is awesome, and like most arenas in 2019 they show video projections on the ice. You can tell fans are invested in their team and I would say it was close to a sold out crowd.  The Flyers got in trouble early in the opening minutes of the game and 2 players ended up in the penalty box (one serving a four minute double minor).  Fans really gave it to the refs with a barrage of boos and heckling chants.
After taking those early penalties the Flyers couldn’t find their rhythm.  From my viewpoint most players looked like they were skating through quick sand and their passing was off the mark.  I couldn’t tell if the Islanders play was that dominant or if the Flyers were that discombobulated.  I can say that Carter Hart shows a ton of potential and for that reason alone Philadelphia fans have a reason to be excited for the future of the organization.

Now let’s chat about the Flyers infamous mascot…. Gritty.  I’ve said multiple times I don’t like Gritty (his eyes really freak me out) but I can appreciate all the publicity the NHL received because of the orange mascot.  You cannot escape him once you step into the arena.  He is constantly shown on the Jumbotron or makes an appearance on the ice during intermission.  Fans can be seen wearing Gritty on their apparel and wearing glasses that mimic his crazy eyes.  If you or your child fear Gritty this may not be the arena for you simply because he is unavoidable.

My biggest fear going to Philadelphia was interacting with the fans.  As a Devils fan, I heard horror stories about visiting fans going to Wells Fargo Center.  I was really lucky and sat next to the sweetest Flyers fan (shout out to Kelly and her husband). She was incredibly friendly and made my experience even more enjoyable.  I for one can tell you not all Flyers fans are viscous even though they have a bad reputation throughout the league.Overall, I was pleasantly surprised with how much I enjoyed my first Flyers game.  When we were exiting Wells Fargo I saw the Philadelphia skyline in the distance, which was a nice touch while walking to the car.  If you trek out to Philly make sure to check out Xfinity Live and don’t miss Philadelphia’s pregame warm up because who doesn’t want to rap in West Philadelphia born and raised…at a hockey game…in Philadelphia.

For videos and more photos of my experience at Wells Fargo Center check out my instagram  -> @skatinginstilettos.

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Prudential Center | New Jersey


A Weekend Travel Guide

To begin I wanted to create a travel guide that would be helpful for out of town hockey fans that wanted to catch a game in New Jersey (with that said I apologize in advance for how long winded this post is).

The Prudential Center is a beautiful arena located in downtown Newark. The arena is extremely fan friendly for out of town fans.  Security is top notch and staff will always go above and beyond to make sure you have a pleasurable experience.  The venue also offers a variety of food and beer options. However, if you don’t want to pay arena prices I provided a list of restaurants near the Prudential Center below.

The arena is home to the largest in-arena scoreboard in the world.  The jumbotron is almost four stories tall and weighs 88,401 pounds.  As an added bonus Prudential Center opened The Grammy Museum Experience in 2017. The intimate museum is interactive with drum sets, keyboards and a karaoke stage.  The entrance fee is $10.00 and it’s a great way to kill time before a game.

Where to Stay:

In Newark

Hotel Indigo Newark Downtown | 810 Broad Street, Newark, NJ |

Best Western Plus Robert Treat Hotel | 50 Park Place, Newark, NJ |

Hilton Newark Penn Station | 1048 Raymond Blvd., Newark, NJ |

In Hoboken 

W Hoboken | 225 River Street, Hoboken, NJ |

Hoboken is a 20-25 minute drive to Prudential Center.  The only reason I recommend staying in Hoboken/Jersey City is the view of the New York City skyline.  I’m talking to the fans from Arizona or Toronto who have dreamed of seeing NYC.  It is easy to take public transportation from Hoboken into Newark and just as easy to get into NYC.   At the W Hoboken you will have amazing views of the city and access to beautiful waterfront walking paths.

In Jersey City

The Westin Jersey City Newport | 479 Washington Blvd., Jersey City, NJ |

Like Hoboken, Jersey City offers the same appeal and location to NYC.  Jersey City offers a lively nightlife and variety of restaurant options.

Where to Eat:

Edison Ale House | 51 Edison Place, Newark, NJ |

Located directly across from the arena it may be a cheaper option than the Restaurant at Prudential Center.  Be warned this place will get packed before a game so I recommend getting there early if you want a sit down meal.

Seabra Marisqueira | 87 Madison Street, Newark, NJ |

If you’re looking for delicious Portuguese food look no further than Seabra Marisqueira.  Boasting a 4.4 star rating on Google reviews it is 0.7 miles from Prudential Center.     

The Restaurant at Prudential Center |25 Lafayette Street, Newark, NJ |

Located inside the arena, (talk about convenient) the restaurant opens 2 hours prior to puck drop.   Enjoy casual dining and a choice of buffet or A La Carte.  It is recommended to make a reservation in advance.

Other Options

Redd’s Biergarten | 220 Market Place, Newark, NJ |

 Dinosaur Bar-B-Que |224 Market Street, Newark, NJ |

The Prudential Center might not be the loudest arena in the NHL but you will find a core of extremely passionate and knowledgeable fans.   As an added bonus hockey fans have the option to make the weekend a doubleheader and catch the New York Rangers or Islanders.  If anyone has a hockey bucket list like me staying in Hoboken or Jersey City will make the most sense if you want to jump across the river into NYC.     If you’ve seen a game at Prudential Center please leave a comment below… I would love to hear about your experience!

 

 

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Bridgestone Arena | Nashville

As you may or may not know Nashville is one of my favorite cities and I have been anxious to see a game at Bridgestone Arena for quite some time.

Let me start by saying seeing a Predators game exceeded my expectations. Nashville has some of the most dedicated fans I’ve seen; everyone had some form of Preds gear on. Bridgestone was also one of the loudest arenas I have been in with remarkable energy. I saw Nashville host the L.A. Kings in February of 2018 and Pekka Rinne recorded a shutout while the Predators scored 5 goals.

Speaking of 5 goals the Predators organization has so many giveaways throughout the game.

The Big Mac Goal: If the Preds score in the last 5 minutes of the second period fans earn a free Big Mac.

Dunkin Donuts: If Preds win at home fans receive a free medium coffee. If they win due to a shutout fans can receive a free donut the next day.

Wendy’s: When the Preds score four goals or more fans can earn a free 12oz frosty

When B and I attended our game we earned a free frosty and medium coffee + donut.

One of my favorite things about Nashville is how easy it is to navigate. When I was in Tennessee we stayed about 2 and ½ hours outside of Music City. Getting to the arena is so simple, which makes it an extremely friendly city for out of town fans. Bridgestone is in a fantastic location right in the middle of downtown. I easily found parking about 2 blocks from the arena and paid $20.00, which is cheaper than it is in New Jersey for Devils games.

Since you’re in Music City the Predators Organization makes sure to bring the music into Bridgestone. During both intermissions there was a live band playing covers, which definitely kept the fans happy and upbeat.

Overall I loved seeing a game in Nashville. Even though I’ve only been to four arenas Bridgestone is number one on my list. Thinking back I can’t think of one bad thing about my experience. The staff was helpful and very efficient, and the arena and city are surprisingly very clean. I would highly recommend a trip to Nashville and Bridgestone Arena to any avid hockey fan.

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