Arts and Entertainment

Kent's ShoWare Center to celebrate fifth anniversary Jan. 26-27

The ShoWare Center in Kent is 5 years old. - COURTESY PHOTO
The ShoWare Center in Kent is 5 years old.
— image credit: COURTESY PHOTO

It's party time at the ShoWare Center in Kent.

The city-owned arena will receive a fifth anniversary party at 5:05 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 26 during a Seattle Thunderbirds junior hockey game as well as a free public skate from 5-8 p.m. on Monday Jan. 27. The facility opened in January 2009.

“ShoWare Center has established a reputation as an excellent venue for indoor sports, concerts and trade shows," Kent Mayor Suzette Cooke said in a ShoWare Center media release. "And it’s also meeting the needs of our community with winter walking, community events and high school and college graduations.

“We will always be grateful to Gov. (Chris) Gregoire and the state Legislature for allowing Kent to make use of existing tax dollars that were previously going to Seattle.”

Tickets for the T-Birds game are $40 (Club), $30, $24 and $16.

Tickets purchased online at SeattleThunderbirds.com from 5-10 p.m. on Wed., Jan. 22 fwill be discounted $5 for all price levels. Prices do not include service charges.

Game promotions planned include $5 beer/wine and Mike’s Hard Lemonade, $5 hot dog and soda specials, $5 off in the T-Birds team store (minimum $25 order), ticket giveaways for future T-Birds games and other ShoWare Center events, and a whole lot more.

During the public skate (participants must bring their own skates). Attendees also can tour the facility. Concession prices will include $5 hot dog and soda specials.

“Coming on board prior to final construction of the arena, it’s amazing to see how far we’ve come in just five short years," said Tim Higgins, SMG's general manager for the ShoWare. "The recent Florida Georgia Line concert, which set an attendance record for ShoWare Center, along with the Thunderbirds continued success are positive indicators of good things to come.

"We want to take this opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the overwhelming community support the arena has received; without their support we wouldn’t be where we are now. Kent is definitely now on the map as a sports and entertainment destination.”

Despite all of the hoopla, the arena lost $2.01 million during its first four years of operation, including a record high $707,000 in 2012. The income statement for 2013 has not yet been released.

Colin Campbell, T-Birds vice president, looks forward to the anniversary as well.

"ShoWare Center has made Kent a destination for sports and entertainment fans of all ages through T-Birds games and all the other events that have taken place," Campbell said. "We are looking forward to continued success as we head to the WHL playoffs and new acts and events are booked for ShoWare Center."

ShoWare Center: five years by the numbers:

• More than 1.9 million patrons, which have taken advantage of the always free parking.

• Highest attended concert was sold-out Florida Georgia Line on Dec. 14, 2013 with 7,129 people.

• Brenden Silvester of the Seattle Thunderbirds scored the first goal in the arena's history against the Everett Silvertips in a 4-3 Seattle win.

• Has hosted 215 shows (not including sports tenants) with acts including Barry Manilow, Stone Temple Pilots, Kelly Clarkson, A Perfect Circle, Florida Georgia Line, Styx, Backstreet Boys, Boys II Men, American Idol Live!, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Rise Against, Toby Mac, Brian McKnight, REO Speedwagon, Ginuwine, Megadeth, Blackstreet, Chris Tomlin, New Edition, Hillsong United, Dru Hill, Pretty Lights, Skate America, PBR, Strikeforce (MMA), Disney On Ice, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, Harlem Globetrotters, Motorcycle Ice Racing, and many more.

• Jeremy Boyer was the first Seattle Thunderbird to record a Hat Trick (3 goals in a game) on March 15, 2009.

• The Zamboni has resurfaced the arena ice more than 8,500 times.

• More than 214,765 friends, family and local graduates have attended a graduation.

• More than 650,000 patrons have attended a Thunderbirds game since opening.

• Savor..., concessionaire for ShoWare Center, has served more than 105,000 hot dogs, 4,500 pounds of French fries and over 300,000 bottles of soda.

• Shea Theodore is highest drafted Seattle Thunderbird to have played at ShoWare Center, selected by the Anaheim Ducks with the 26th pick of the 2013 NHL Draft.

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