Gliding through America: a guide for ice hockey fans

Hockey fans planning a trip across the US will be thrilled by some of the famous stadiums they can get to see, with a little advance planning. As well as the sporting venues, there are dedicated museums and exhibitions that are well worth taking in, and fun opportunities for ice-skating. Here are a few of the best.

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The United States Hockey Hall of Fame

Eveleth, Minnesota is home to the US Hockey Hall of Fame and this is definitely worth a visit. Despite being a relatively small community, Eveleth has produced an astonishing number of quality players and has been designated the “Capital of American Hockey” while the museum itself is often described as the “National Shrine of American Hockey.”


United Center

This is the largest arena in the US. A base for the Chicago Blackhawks, as well as the Chicago Bulls of the National Basketball Association (NBA); like most big arenas it also hosts family events, concerts and a variety of sports events. Recently, the United Center announced plans for a series of upgrades and updates to the exterior and interior of the building.


Madison Square Garden

An iconic building in many ways, and home to the New York Rangers, Madison Square Garden is a multi-purpose arena in midtown Manhattan, NYC. It is now considered to be the oldest major sporting and event venue in New York City’s metropolitan area as well as one of the most active. As far as the National Hockey League venues go, MSG is definitely the oldest and in global terms it is the third busiest music arena in the world.


Joe Louis Arena

Named for the former heavyweight boxing champion, this is America’s second largest ice hockey stadium and is located in downtown Detroit. Home to the Red Wings, in 1979 it replaced the Olympia Stadium where the Red Wings had played since 1927. A new home for the team was announced in 2012: the proposed Detroit Red Wings 18,000-seater arena and entertainment district was granted funding in July 2013 and will replace a largely vacant downtown plot. The build is expected to take 24–30 months.


Wells Fargo Center

A replacement for the Spectrum arena since 1996, Wells Fargo Center was rebranded in 2010 and took on Wells Fargo signage and logo, etc. During the next couple months it’s possible to catch some great Philadelphia Flyers games – during the middle of March the team is at home to play the Penguins, Blackhawks, Stars, Blues and Kings. In April, confirmed games include those with visitors Blue Jackets, Sabres and Hurricanes.


Ice skating venues 

As well as seeing some of the iconic ice hockey arenas in the US, taking in one or two ice skating rinks will provide some diversity, and a chance to stretch the legs, literally. Visit Washington to skate among the artworks at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden Ice Rink, or mix skating with some retail therapy at Houston’s Ice at the Galleria, which has a gigantic atrium and a gallery for onlookers on the second floor.