Guide To Giant Center
If you have enjoyed going to NHL games, you might likely find yourself now interested in the American Hockey League. AHL is one of top leagues in North America, only behind the NHL, and there is no better AHL city or building than Hershey and Giant Center.
Here are a few “insider” helpful hints to enjoy your first experience at Giant Center.
Don’t think that just because this is the American Hockey League, the tickets will be easy to get. You can get tickets online, but you can also save on the service charge by simply visiting the Giant Center box office during the week.There are no bad seats in Giant Center. The upper deck provides a great view of the action and the tickets are a little less expensive. There is a discount coupon for $2 off a ticket on the Bears pocket schedules, that is good for games through December 31, 2012. Individual game tickets aren’t available for the Club Lounge or suite areas. But remember games will sell out, particularly Saturday nights, so it’s best to buy in advance.
There is a parking charge at Giant Center. The earlier you arrive, the shorter your walk to the building. There are plenty of handicapped parking spots available.
There is always plenty of activity at the main doors, but don’t be overwhelmed at the crowd in that area. There are program sales and a Patriot-News booth to purchase player trading cards, along with the always popular ice cream stand. Just to the right is the team store (more below) but start to look for your section and you’ll find much less “traffic” on either side of the lobby.
Hershey Bears Booster Club:
The Booster Club has a great table behind section 118. They have items for sale and raffle, along with their traditional benifit raffle. You might consider becoming a member and taking a look at some of the road trips the club takes, following the team to other AHL cities.
One of the popular destinations is the Hershey Jr Bears raffle table behind section 125. Proceeds help fund the Hershey Jr Bears youth teams and there are always some great autographed items. There are often some big names autographed items. The numbers are announced during the second period and you can always go back and check at the table if you missed the announcement.
There is a wide variety of food at Giant Center. Over the years, Hershey has tried a variety of items. Some have gone over well, others have gone away. The standard fare is available at all the big stands, but if you head toward section 116, there are more specialized Italian dishes and pizza. If you don’t like what you see at first, just keep making a loop around the building (it’s not like walking around an NHL building–it’s much quicker) and check out the variety. There are also tables to sit starting at section 115, but there is no table service.
Obviously players don’t sign during warmups, but after the game, if you have time, most players will sign autographs at the players door. As you look at the front of the building, the players come out on the lower level to your left. Just go down the steps to the smaller parking lot and you’ll see fans gathered outside the door after the game.
Walking down to your seat during play:
The ushers request that you stay at the top the steps of your section until play has stopped. Once the first whistle has blown, you are allowed to come down the steps. If you decide to walk around the concourse during intermission, we suggest that you try to get back to your seat early so you do not miss the action.
If you are heading to a Bears game and don’t have any Bears gear, you can grab some swag on the Bears website or at one of the many stands around Giant Center. There are five different shops around the concourse. The main store is behind sections 101-102. There are also four kiosks behind sections 107-108, 110-111, 121-122, and 124-125.
Giant Center provides official policies and procedures on their website that will also answer many of your questions.
The Hershey Bears/Giant Center experience is one of the best in all of hockey and we think you’ll keep coming back.