Getting answers: Thunderbirds season preparations | News
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) –Hockey is back in Springfield. The Thunderbirds take the ice tomorrow for their first preseason game with their official home opener just over a week away.
President Nate Costa sat down for Western Mass News Getting Answers with Dave Madsen earlier Thursday.
October 16 home opener will end the more than 500-day streak without a Thunderbirds game. Costa said he’s excited to bring fans back to downtown Springfield.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced an early end to the 2019-2020 Thunderbirds season, and the team opted out of the 2020-2021 season because of money and safety concerns.
Costa joined Western Mass News’ Dave Madsen Thursday ahead of the first preseason game in Springfield tomorrow; he says he’s glad hockey is back to also help support local businesses downtown.
“I think we’re a huge economic driver for the city all the restaurants in the bars they’re always packed on game nights, but then just in general we feel like we’re the heartbeat of the city and to get back on the ice I will hopefully drive a lot of activity downtown,” Costa said.
Fans will be required to wear masks at games.
He said this season is already looking strong, season ticket numbers are up, and opening night on October 16 is looking like a sold-out game.
Costa said guidelines can change if COVID cases decrease but right now they will start the season with a mask requirement.