by Ed Snyder, Assistant Director of Sports Facilities
Here at Erie Insurance Arena, there is always activity and we are always looking forward to what’s next. However, getting ready for the next big event is a team effort and we have a lot of people working behind the scenes to make sure everything is just right for when you come in the door.
First of all, we need to set the arena for the type of event we will be hosting. Our Operations staff works around the clock to make sure everything is set up properly. If the Erie Otters have a game, we need to make sure the ice is ready to skate on and set up just the way the players like. Once we install the ice surface in August it is down until hockey season is complete in the spring!
When the Erie BayHawks have a game, we first cover the ice and then build the basketball court, courtside suites and kids zone right on top of the ice covering. It takes our overnight Operations staff approximately eight hours to convert the arena from hockey to basketball.
Concerts, graduations and other special events are similar to basketball as we cover the ice and then construct whatever is needed on top of the floor. We may build stages, chair set ups and other special requirements depending on what the show or event requires. We may even bring in 55 dump truck loads of dirt to put on the floor as we did in November for Monster Jam! Our local Stage Hands arrive at the arena hours before the event and work long after to assist the traveling crews with set up and tear down all of the gear, lighting and sound that may be used.
Once the arena is set, our Housekeeping, Food & Beverage, Guest Services and Security departments all get to work to ensure everything is stocked, cleaned, prepped and ready for guests to enter. Our Box Office staff is on hand for any ticketing needs and our Production staff prepares content for the video board.
It is truly a team effort with hundreds of employees working behind the scenes to make sure building is ready to go! It would not be possible to host over 100 events a year without our staff. We at Erie Events are very proud of our staff and cannot thank them enough. All of us can’t wait to see you at an event in 2019!