Monthly Archives: December 2013

Public gets first view of Glendale Arena at open house

by Jason Stone

The Glendale Arena is not yet open, but that has not stopped 9-year-old Devin Aschenbrenner from being excited for a certain upcoming event.

“WWE, baby,” Aschenbrenner screamed when asked what events he’s looking forward to at the Valley’s newest sports and entertainment facility. “I love Undertaker, Kane and Stonecold Steve Austin — the Texas Rattlesnake.”

The WWE Road to Wrestlemania is scheduled for Jan. 3, but last Sunday fans were treated to an early glimpse of the arena — albeit a small portion.

About 12,000 people — or half the average attendance for an Arizona Cardinals game this year — visited the arena to watch the Phoenix Coyotes hold their first hockey practice on the ice, sit in seats and participate in games and giveaways in the parking lot.

Arena officials opened up the east side of the lower bowl to the public, generating excitement for the official Dec. 26 opening.

“We’re waiting for the arena to open before we go to games (this year),” said Glendale resident Theresa Parkhouse, 39, who sat with her husband, Scott, in the fourth row at center ice.

“Just look at that monitor,” Scott said, pointing to the large hanging scoreboard above the ice. “That’s nice.”

Pointing was the action of the day as ushers and onlookers searched out aspects of the arena that set it apart from others.

Professor Splat, part of the City of Glendale’s Slow Down Fridays campaign, tried to get fans fired up by practicing their Coyotes howling.

“The acoustics are horrible,” said Splat, who was dressed in a red school graduation outfit, complete with camp and tassel, but did not give his real name. “But that’s because we need more participation.”

Splat turned to a group of fans seated in the middle of the center section and yelled out, “Come on, everybody! Ow-ow-ow-owwwww!”

Coyotes officials sold game tickets outside the arena and children had chances to win skate passes and get their faces painted.

Adults, meanwhile, received the chance to check out the prices at the concession stands.

A Coyote Dog runs $4.50, while a souvenir soda will cost $5. The arena will offer Seattle’s Best Coffee for $3 and margaritas will set fans back $6.50.

Kids even can purchase a value meal of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, a soda, chips and a cookie for $5.

“I already love it here,” said Eric Aschenbrenner, Devin’s father. “It’s nice and open. And there is not a bad seat in the house.”

Officials estimate 3,000 canned food items were donated at the door.

Published at • Dec. 18, 2003