Chirps from Center Ice

A fan blog about the AHL's Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins

Done Deal With Details 5/8

On Wednesday the Luzerne County Convention Center Authority held their monthly meeting on the second Wednesday of the month and in it they checked off one of their to-do’s on their plate for well over a year.

They voted unanimously to approve a 10 year contract lease extension between themselves and the Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Penguins.

Here are some of the highlights:

– New lease agreement kicks in with the Penguins when the current one expires. It will run from July 1, 2019 through June 30, 2029.

– SMG will continue to manage the facility for that same time frame. Their food vendor Savor, remains as well.

– Will Beekman takes over for Brian Sipe who is leaving for Rupp Arena in Kentucky as the new Arena GM. Beekman starts Monday. He used to work for the Penguins from 2002 to 2008 before taking over as executive director of the Kirby Center.

– The Arena / Authority consider the Penguins a partner and not a tenant.

– The Penguins are committing nearly $900,000 towards improving the locker rooms and other, “back of house” areas.

– The Arena will be installing ribbon boards.

– They will also be installing brand new LED lighting.

– The Arena is committing $1 Million towards the building which will be achieved / concluded by the fifth year of the lease. These improvements would include a new team store inside the Arena and possibly a lounge area.

– The WiFi will be improved / upgraded. This has been known for a few months now.

– Penguins CEO Jeff Barrett took two questions. One of them was on ticket prices and the possibility of increases as a result of the new deal. Barrett confirmed that there would be no ticket increases as a result of the new ten year lease.

Those are the particulars, filled in with the Pens release with some finer details and quotes.

The Pens did a Periscope of the press conference that you can watch here:

If I see anything else from Tyler or otherwise, I’ll drop in and make the appropriate edits, but those were the particulars worth mentioning. There wasn’t anything said about new Zambonis or any mumbo jumbo about transferal of who owns the team to who or if there are opt outs in the contract.

More as it comes. Probably the schedule matrix will be the next line of notable news once the Spring meetings conclude in Chicago later this week.

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