Thunderbirds’ first Kent game expected to be a sell-out

Team officials expect a sellout crowd of 6,100 when the Seattle Thunderbirds play their first hockey game Jan. 3 at the city’s new ShoWare Center.

“Tickets are dwindling fast,” said Rick Ronish, T-bird director of operations, in a phone interview Monday.

Ronish said fewer than 300 tickets remained for the game. The T-Birds play the Everett Silvertips at 7:05 p.m. Jan. 3.

Fans from all over the Greater Puget Sound area are snapping up tickets.

“They’re coming from everywhere,” Ronish said. “They’re spread out from the north to the south to the east and the west. We’ve got fans from Bellevue and North Seattle coming down here.”

Ronish expects the ShoWare Center opener to be a wild one.

“It will be crazy,” he said. “It will be a lot of fun. And it will be loud.”

Tickets are only available online at www or

ShoWare Center officials expect the box office near the front entrance of the events center to open Dec. 29. The T-birds will take ticket orders by phone at 253-239-7825, once the box office opens.


“Tickets are selling for all of the games, but sales really took off for the first one,” Ronish said. “That’s very good, especially at this time of year when it’s a busy time that people are paying attention.”

The T-birds play in the Western Hockey League. The WHL features players ages 15-20 who hope to make it to the National Hockey League, and a number of T-Bird players have letters of intent to move onto the NHL.

The $84.5 million ShoWare Center at Kent, located at 625 W. James St., is the new home of the Thunderbirds. The city has a 30-year lease with the Thunderbirds. The team opted to pull up the stakes at its previous home ice at Seattle’s KeyArena to roost in Kent.

Ticket prices are $22 for most seats or $16 for adults and $12 for children in the arena’s “family zone,” where no alcohol is allowed. A limited number of club seats are available for $40. The club seats include access to the club lounge.

Tickets also are selling well for other Saturday games slated for the new events center. Twenty-five games will be played this season in Kent.

The ShoWare Center officially opens at the city’s grand opening party from 4 to 9 p.m. Jan. 2. City officials will offer free tours=2 0and entertainment.

Concerts, ice shows, the Harlem Globetrotters, high school graduations and other events are planned for the ShoWare Center.

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