Why North Carolina is a Great Place for Hockey
Being from North West Pennsylvania and growing up around Hockey all of my life I was worried when I moved to North Carolina I wouldn’t have a chance to see the sport I loved other than on the television. However, I had no idea that there were many places in NC where I could scratch that itch and see some great local and national hockey!
When one thinks of North Carolina, images of stunning coastlines, picturesque mountains, and a rich history often come to mind. But there’s another hidden gem in the Tar Heel State that’s been gaining traction and recognition in recent years—hockey. Yes, you read that right. North Carolina is emerging as a surprising hub for hockey enthusiasts, offering a unique blend of professional and amateur action for fans of all stripes.
A Hockey Haven: Where to Catch the Action
North Carolina may not be the first place that springs to mind when you think of hockey, but it’s rapidly carving out its own niche in the sport. If you’re looking to experience the thrill of live hockey, you’re in luck.
Carolina Hurricanes: The jewel in North Carolina’s hockey crown, the Carolina Hurricanes, is an NHL team that calls the PNC Arena in Raleigh home. Whether you’re a die-hard fan or just curious about the sport, catching a Hurricanes game is an experience you won’t want to miss. The team’s passionate fan base and thrilling on-ice action make for an electric atmosphere.
Charlotte Checkers: If you’re in the Queen City, you can cheer for the Charlotte Checkers, the AHL affiliate of the Hurricanes. Bojangles’ Coliseum becomes a battleground as these future NHL stars showcase their skills. If you are from Western PA like me you can see the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins play the Checkers like 4 or 5 times a year.
Carolina Thunderbirds: For those who prefer a more intimate hockey experience, the Carolina Thunderbirds offer an exciting alternative. This Federal Prospects Hockey League (FPHL) team is based in Winston-Salem and provides affordable and family-friendly entertainment. As lifelong fans, we can personally vouch for the thrill of being season ticket holders.
Fayetteville Marksmen: Another hidden gem in North Carolina’s hockey scene is the Fayetteville Marksmen. Competing in the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL), the Marksmen bring fast-paced and hard-hitting action to the Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville. Their dedication to the sport and commitment to the local community makes for a remarkable fan experience.
One of the unique aspects of North Carolina’s hockey scene is the opportunity for NHL fans from other parts of the country to catch their favorite teams in action when they face off against the Carolina Hurricanes. It’s a chance for visiting fans to bring their energy and enthusiasm to the PNC Arena and create an unforgettable atmosphere. You can witness the Hurricanes take on storied franchises like the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs, or Pittsburgh Penguins right here in the heart of North Carolina. We try to make the trip twice a year to Raleigh to see the Canes play the Pens.
The Value of Season Tickets
Speaking from personal experience, being a season ticket holder for the Carolina Thunderbirds has been an absolute delight. It’s not just about watching games; it’s about becoming part of a community that shares a passion for the sport. Season tickets offer numerous benefits, including substantial cost savings compared to individual game tickets, priority seating, exclusive events with players, and a sense of belonging to a close-knit fanbase.
But perhaps the most rewarding part of holding season tickets is witnessing the growth of the team and the players. It’s about being there for the highs and lows, the thrilling victories and the hard-fought defeats. As a season ticket holder, you’re not just a spectator; you’re an essential part of the team’s journey. We have been a Season ticket holder of the Carolina Thunderbirds for the past 3 seasons and love it.
North Carolina may not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of hockey, but it’s time to reconsider. With a variety of teams and venues, the state offers a diverse range of hockey experiences for fans of all ages. Whether you’re cheering on the Carolina Hurricanes in Raleigh, enjoying AHL action in Charlotte, supporting the Carolina Thunderbirds in Winston-Salem, or experiencing the excitement of the Fayetteville Marksmen, North Carolina is fast becoming a hockey destination. So, grab your jersey, bring your passion, and discover the thrill of hockey in the Tar Heel State.
While we love the Carolina Hurricanes I need to end this article with a Go Pens!