The buzz around the Northland is all about the 2023 Women’s Frozen Four
Banners and signs can be seen throughout Duluth as the 2023 Women’s Frozen Four has touched down in the city. “There is a ton of excitement from the community, staff, hockey enthusiasts, etc. Duluth is a hockey city, so we’re excited to have it back here,” Pier B Resort Hotel General Manager Jesse Hinkemyer.
Thousands of people will be making their way into Duluth with many businesses, restaurants, activities, events, and more to partake in while attending this national event. “It’s really great to have this tournament because it’s an after-season bonus event that we’re looking at between six and 7000 people over the weekend being here in hotel rooms, eating out, going and doing all the things that the North Island has to offer. So it really is a nice economic boon to the region,” Director of Communications at the DECC Lucie Amundsen shared.
According to the DECC officials, around 5,500 tickets have been sold for both games combined.
“Duluth loves its sporting fans. They come here to the AMSOIL Arena, and then they fan out, and you can see them in Canal Park. I expect Lincoln Park is going to be very busy up over the hill. All those places will experience an uplift, and that’s just great for everybody,” Amundsen shared.
With it being eleven years since the DECC has held a national sporting event, the venue previously created a new program in which organizations can provide volunteers in concession stands, and the DECC will donate to their cause.
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The Frozen Four has not been played in Duluth since 2012 when it was held at AMSOIL Arena when it was first opened. The University of Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs won its last national championship in 2010.
Everyone is buzzing about the event, especially for the tourism and hospitality industries looking at an economic boost.
“We’re very grateful that we have the DECC in our backyard here. It hosts so many great events, whether it be concerts or conventions or now sporting events like this, and we’re happy to see those fans coming to town this week. So the impact is very direct for us here at Grandmas, but also a great impact on the community as a whole,” said Director of Business Development at Grandma’s Restaurant Company Tony Bronson.
When it comes to hotel bookings, Hinkemeyer added that for Pier B Resort Hotel this is not usually how their weekly hotel bookings go. “This is typically not a week that we are extremely busy, but with this event we now are. There were bookings on the books that were kind of waiting to see how things panned out with different teams. Once that solidified, things picked up substantially, and we’re pretty much going to be sold out for most of the week.”
Year after year, the game of hockey evolves across the northland, with more and more youth players joining the sport. With the girl’s game growing in popularity, players get excited to see those older girls on the ice.
“The women’s team at the local universities, especially UMD, we were really close this year to it. They’re very proud of the tradition that we have here. So for locals that are coming up and seeing the local team do well. There now able to see some of these other teams from around the country and say, hey, I’d like to do that someday. I want to be a part of that, and it’s huge,” Hinkemeyer expressed.
The Women’s Frozen Four starts on Friday with Ohio State and Northeastern battling it out at 2:30 p.m., then Wisconsin and Minnesota hitting the ice at 6 p.m. The National Championship will be on Sunday at 3 p.m. Click here to see the full bracket. The games can also be streamed on ESPN+ App or their website.