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Xcel Energy Center
The X
Xcel Energy Center.svg

XcelEnergyCenteroverview.jpg
Location 199 Kellogg Blvd W, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55102
Coordinates 44°56′41″N 93°6′4″W / 44.94472°N 93.10111°W / 44.94472; -93.10111Coordinates: 44°56′41″N 93°6′4″W / 44.94472°N 93.10111°W / 44.94472; -93.10111
Opened 2000
Owner City of St. Paul
Operator Minnesota Sports & Entertainment
Surface Multi-surface
Construction cost $130 million USD
Architect Populous
Capacity Ice hockey / Lacrosse: 18,064 (18,568 with standing room)
Concerts:
  • End Stage 14,440
  • Center Stage 20,554
Tenants
Minnesota Wild (NHL) (2000-present)
Minnesota Swarm (NLL) (2005-present)

Xcel Energy Center (The X) is a multi-purpose arena located in Saint Paul, Minnesota, sponsored by Xcel Energy. It is home of the Minnesota Wild of the National Hockey League and the Minnesota Swarm of the National Lacrosse League. It is owned by the city of Saint Paul and operated by Minnesota Sports & Entertainment. It is on the same block as the RiverCentre convention facility, Roy Wilkins Auditorium, and Ordway Center for the Performing Arts. The arena has four spectator levels: one suite level, and three general seating levels named the 100 level, the club level, and the 200 level. Its official capacity is 18,064.

Contents

History

The Xcel Energy Center opened in Fall 2000. It was built on the site of the demolished St. Paul Civic Center. In 2004, the arena was named by ESPN as the best overall sports venue in the U.S. The 10 millionth person passed the gates on July 3, 2007.

The Twin Cities were selected as the hosting metropolis for the 2008 Republican National Convention on September 27, 2006, and the Xcel Energy Center was chosen as the main venue. The Republican National Convention was held at the Xcel Center on September 1–4. The arena has also hosted concerts for artists such as: Queen + Paul Rodgers, Bon Jovi and AC/DC, as well as WCW and WWE shows.

Features

The concourse areas contain a hockey jersey from every high school in Minnesota hanging on the wall, reflecting the "State of Hockey." Surrounding the arena at all four corners are "crows nests." One features an organ built into the shell of a Zamboni and is played during Wild games. A second nest features a lighthouse that contains a foghorn that is blasted before the game, for Wild goals and after a win. The third is used for the announcement before every Wild game; "Lets play hockey!" and the fourth is for multipurpose... mostly for Fox Sports Network North (FSN) commentary and interviews.

Attendance Records

  • March 8, 2008 : The Minnesota State High School League Boys hockey tournament set a new attendance record during the AA semifinal session. Edina and Benilde-St. Margaret's played in the first game followed by Roseau and Hill-Murray in front of a crowd of 19,559
  • February 8, 2004: the NHL All-Star Game set a record for attendance at a hockey game in Minnesota at 19,434
  • The record attendance for a Wild game was set October 5, 2005 at 19,398, the first game after the lockout season.
  • On October 28, 2003, Shania Twain set Xcel Energy Center's single-night concert attendance record of 20,554.
  • On March 17, 2007, 19,463 spectators watched the final game of the WCHA Final Five tournament, the largest crowd ever for an indoor United States college ice hockey game[1](i.e. not including games held in football stadiums such as the Cold War).
  • Since opening the doors of the Xcel Energy Center on September 29, 2000, the Wild have had a sellout for every single game (totaling 400 consecutive home games as of March 8, 2010).[2]

Other Events

The "X" is the site of the WCHA Final Five, Minnesota Boys' High School Hockey, the Minnesota Girl's High School Volleyball Tournament, and the High School Wrestling tournaments, as well as the host of the Minnesota State High School League-sponsored volleyball state tournament. It hosted the 2002 NCAA Frozen Four and will do so again in 2011. The National Lacrosse League's Minnesota Swarm began regular season play in the arena in January, 2005.

References

External links

Preceded by
First Arena
Home of the
Minnesota Wild

2000 – present
Succeeded by
current
Preceded by
Pepsi Arena
Albany, New York
Host of the
Frozen Four

2002
Succeeded by
HSBC Arena
Buffalo, New York
Preceded by
Office Depot Center
Host of the
NHL All-Star Game

2004
Succeeded by
American Airlines Center
Preceded by
first arena
Home of the
Minnesota Swarm

2005 – present
Succeeded by
current
Preceded by
Madison Square Garden
Host of the
Republican National Convention

2008
Succeeded by
TBD
Preceded by
Ford Field
Detroit, Michigan
Future Host of the
Frozen Four

2011
Succeeded by
St. Pete Times Forum
Tampa, Florida
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