(12/17/13) - Hockey fans from Saginaw are getting ready to travel to Detroit for an outdoor hockey game.
An ice rink is in place at Comerica Park, where the Saginaw Spirit will play the Windsor Spitfires a week from Sunday.
While the game will most likely set an attendance record, organizers are hoping for a strong turnout from the Great Lakes Bay Region.
"The outdoor OHL doubleheader is two years in the making," said Craig Goslin, Saginaw Spirit president.
There was no outdoor hockey in Detroit last year because of the NHL lockout, but there is now. A game took place Monday at Comerica Park involving military veterans and on Dec. 29, the Saginaw Spirit will be the host team of an Ontario Hockey League doubleheader, the first outdoor games in OHL history. Twenty-one thousand tickets have been sold.
"We think that number is going to go up to 25,000 and the record is 19,000.
Goslin says he still talks to fans who are not familiar with the Hockeytown Winter Festival and he's hoping for a big turnout from the area.
"We certainly have about 1,400 from the Great Lakes Bay Region, we hope to get that number of 3,000," Goslin said.
Seventeen-year-old Spirit player Dylan Sadowy has never played an organized hockey game outside.
"Played in the backyard, played at the cottage on the lake with my father and sister," he said. "It's a once in a lifetime opportunity, it's going to be the first one in history and it's going to be a great experience to play in the first one," he said.
Tickets will also get you into entertainment tents where Saginaw area bands will be playing.
"It's a very Saginaw-oriented day at Comerica Park," Goslin said.
Mike Tribble of the business consulting firm Yeo and Yeo will be at Comerica Park for the Spirit game. The hockey fan will also be going to the Red Wings-Maple Leafs game on New Years Day in Ann Arbor.
"Got our tickets, we have six of us," he said. "My wife and I have been going to different places to get warm clothing because we have no idea how to plan to watch a game outdoors."
For more information on the OHL Winter Classic, click HERE.
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