GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Grand Rapids Griffins will be allowing fans at home games starting March 13 when they host the Rockford IceHogs.
The team only allowed family members and close friends to its first two home contests.
“To get to March and we’ll be able to welcome 750 people versus 100 is a huge difference,” team president Tim Gortsema said.
The team will allow 750 fans inside Van Andel Arena. Season ticket holders will be the first group of fans invited to watch games.
“We feel an obligation to reach out to that fan base first and give them an opportunity to decide if they want to come to one or more games,” Gortsema said. “Once we’ve satisfied their desire to come, then we’ll make it available to the general public.”
The organization is prioritizing health and safety measures. Tickets will be paperless, concessions will be ordered by phone and large groups will not be allowed to gather.
“Entire socially distanced tickets in pods,” Gortsema said. “They’re in pod groupings of two or four with appropriate distance away from people in their section or the next section over.”
Gortsema says they’re ready for fans to be back with them at Van Andel.
“Economics are still not good, not a profit-making number by any stretch,” Gortsema said. “Make a great play, great goal, at least there’s a better vibe in the building.”
Grand Rapids has 13 home games remaining on the schedule.