The Syracuse Crunch ownership is working on a plan for Alliance Bank Stadium, home of the Syracuse Chiefs, to host the first-ever outdoor AHL game.The Syracuse Crunch minor-league hockey team is working on a plan for Alliance Bank Stadium, home of the Syracuse Chiefs, to host the first-ever outdoor AHL game.
The Crunch is working on the proposed game with Onondaga County on the logistics of a game. Outdoor hockey is becoming a fad: the NHL has seen impressive returns on its annual New Year’s Day game, college football is jumping on the bandwagon, and it’s only a matter of time before baseball operators do the same.
The plan in Syracuse is to install a full rink at Alliance Bank Stadium so the Crunch can host the first AHL outdoor game. It’s an ambitious plan: the Crunch owners want to see more than 25,000 crammed into the ballpark, which may be a stretch: we’re not quite sure where all the fans would go, and we’re not so sure the facilities issue would be addressed with the installation of Porta-Potties. And we know there are more cost-effective solutions out there than the $300,000 pitched by a local rink vendor. Still, if it works, the game could be a game plan for other teams wanting to monetize their facilities in the offseason.