By Mike DeNardo
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The dasher boards are up and extra seats have been installed, as Citizens Bank Park gets ready to host hockey’s “Winter Classic” on January 2nd.
The rink is in place between first and third base. The center field batter’s eye is covered under a 1,500-seat grandstand, and Flyers and Rangers logos have replaced the Phillies insignia on the dugout roofs.
NHL VP Don Renzulli says that in some ways, staging outdoor hockey at Citizens Bank Park poses less of a concern than previous years.
“It’s a lot different from Fenway and Wrigley,” he says. Renzulli notes that at Fenway there was the danger that water pipes and beer lines could freeze.
“This stadium’s 90 years newer than that one. So I think most of it is winterized,” he tells KYW Newsradio. “There’s not much here that we’ve really had to do as far as the stadium is concerned. A lot of the beer and soda are in bottles. So we don’t have that much to worry about with the taps and freezing. And then all the bathrooms are basically winterized.”
As for those things the league wants to freeze, the two-inch ice surface will be kept at 22 degrees by coolant pumped in from a refrigeration truck outside the ballpark.