March 12, 2012

Hockey With Kids

Several weekends ago we went to a Stockton Thunder game with a big group of friends. It was Alice's first time. 

And she hated it. Bummer.

It was something to do with the hockey itself, I think, because between periods and walking around the concourse (Alice and I spent a lot of time walking around the concourse), she seemed to almost enjoy herself. 

But. A lot of other kids - even toddlers like Alice - looked like they were having a fantastic time, so I thought I'd pass along the few tips I picked up for going to a hockey game with kiddos.

1. Bundle up
The arena gets pretty chilly. Not parka chilly - but remember to pack everyone a sweatshirt.

2. Check your calendar
Wednesdays and Sundays are Family Days for the Thunder - discounted ticket packages, and sometimes, fun giveaways (like caps!), are available. There are two more Family Days left this season: This Wednesday (March 14 at 7 p.m.) and Sunday (March 18 at 4 p.m.)

3. Time it right
We didn't make it, but I've heard it's fun to get to the arena early enough to watch the team warm up (and listen to their warmup songs). If, like us, you get there after things have started, know that you'll have to wait for a break in play to take your seats. It shouldn't be long.

4. Know your concessions
Lines at the main concession stands get really long really fast during breaks between periods. Try the smaller kiosks. Crowds are a little less daunting, treats are still tasty and, besides, it's been a really long time since you had Dippin' Dots.

5. Family amenities
Admission is free for kids 2 and younger if they sit on a parent's lap, and it's OK to bring in baby food. Changing stations and ATMs are located throughout the arena. Personal cameras are allowed.

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