I would like to welcome the M&G community to the Adirondack region of Upstate New York. Knowing that Calgary is two time zones and many miles away, I wanted to tell you a bit about our community, the intense hockey fans that reside here, and how very excited we are to have the Flames in Glens Falls.
Glens Falls is a small city of 15,000 residents on the edge of the Adirondack Mountains, located about 170 miles south of Montreal and 200 miles north of New York City. When adding the towns and surrounding communities - the population is approximately 125,000. We have a significant historic legacy that dates back to the 1700‘s and the American Revolutionary War. There is an equally strong hockey legacy which includes AHL and UHL franchises, several retired NHL and AHL players calling our community home as they chose to reside here after they culminated their careers at the Civic Center, and local high schools who hold New York State hockey championships.
The Glens Falls Civic Center was built in 1979 - the first of 20 seasons the Adirondack Red Wings owned this community. It is an old barn which was built for hockey, having great sight lines with a seating capacity of approximately 4800 at a steep angle - resulting in fans feeling they are on top of the ice. The roar in the building can be deafening, although we have not had a great deal to cheer about since the Red Wings days. After 20 years and four Calder Cups, the Red Wings decided to relocate in 1999. We had a few UHL franchises until the Flyers decided to make Glens Falls their AHL home five years ago while a new rink was being built for the Phantoms in Allentown, PA. The hockey fans truly appreciated the opportunity to have the Phantoms in our community, even though the Flyers philosophy was to win at the NHL level by trading away prospects and draft picks. This resulted in a team that was at or near the bottom of the AHL for the five seasons while they called the GFCC home. Even with the on ice product often being less than impressive, the seats were filled and the fans provided significant support.
I would like to share that the new home for the Flames AHL franchise prides itself as a knowledgable and passionate hockey town. The prospects will be treated and looked after like family here, as our hockey team is a major focus within the community. Most of the player’s live in our small downtown and walk to the rink. They will have less travel than they had previously and a fan base that will truly appreciate them - never taking the team for granted.
There is a press conference at 9:30 eastern tomorrow morning with the Flames front office and our city officials, at the GFCC. We thank the Flames for this opportunity and our city officials for their hard work in attracting the team. The community is looking forward to the beginning of a long partnership.
I have been a season ticket holder for the Red Wings, the UHL franchises, the Phantom’s - and now look forward to putting the deposit on my seats for the upcoming season. Welcome to the Adirondack's and Go Flames !!