The Syracuse Crunch have been bringing people to Downtown Syracuse for years and local businesses like bars and restaurants have seen the benefits.
This year the Syracuse Crunch Hockey team is celebrating its 25th anniversary. The team has done lots of work in the community and has brought a lot of business to downtown establishments.
The Chief Operating Officer of the Crunch, Jim Sarosy, says the Crunch want people to get in the routine of coming downtown.
“In terms of bringing people downtown, it’s not only our 38 home dates,” said Sarosy. It’s also the numerous – dozens and dozens of events that we do throughout the year. “Whether it’s youth hockey stuff or public appearances that we do in the building here. It’s getting people into that repetition of coming down here.”
Sarosy said this will help people feel comfortable about coming downtown.
“Trying to dispel the potential, although erroneous stigmas of a downtown,” he said. “You know, it’s dangerous or whatever people think. I think through that alone, we have been able to dispel some of that negative eye that you would usually have for a downtown.”
The Crunch also bring residents to downtown every year. It brings in out-of-town players nine months out of the year and a majority of the players, and members of the coaching staff live downtown.
In addition to bringing residents, the Crunch also generate business for downtown establishments.
The Ale ‘n’ Angus Pub has been across from the Oncenter War Memorial Arena since June of 2005. The Owner of Ale ‘n’ Angus, Randy Beach, says game night brings a special atmosphere.
“It’s nuts, everybody’s wearing their jerseys,” he said. “And whether they’re home team or whether they are the visiting team, it’s just happy-go-lucky, everybody’s in a great mood and it’s a fantastic atmosphere.”
Beach says now people are actually moving downtown, unlike before. There are a lot of renovated buildings in downtown, a lot of the being apartments and condos. Beach says he sees many of the people who move in the area, walking to the arena on game night.
“As I sit in my seat at the game. I see more butts in the seats,” said Beach. “And it has to benefit them as much as it benefits us.”
The Crunch has attracted people downtown by having events and appearances in the community. The team brings residents, like coaches and players downtown every year. It also brings business to local establishments like bars and restaurants, nine months of the year.