Ralph Engelstad Arena
One Ralph Engelstad Arena Drive, Grand Forks, ND, USA
www.theralph.com - 701.777.4167
Ralph Engelstad Arena Grand Forks Reviews
Home of Fighting Sioux Hockey Jan 30, 2009
The Ralph Englestad Arena was built primarily as a hockey facility but also houses basketball games and concerts. It is described as "the best facility of its kind in the world". It can seat 11,640 for hockey and regularly sells out for men's hockey games. The games are are a ton of fun to attend and you even sit in "luxurious" cherry wood and leather seats. The concourse floors are granite and everything has a nice and clean look and feel to it.
UND is currently in the middle of a controversy surrounding its nickname "the Fighting Sioux" and Indian warrior logo. Ralph Englestad donated the $104+ million to build the facility and plastered it with 2,200 logos. The logos are found everywhere: center ice, on the ends of the rows of seats, on signs to meeting rooms and offices, in large mosaics on the granite floors, in banners and wall decorations, and even on the outside of the building. Englestad donated the facility, but is leasing it to UND, his alma mater, with the stipulation that the Fighting Sioux nickname be kept. To help ensure the nickname is kept, he placed the 2000+ logos to make removing them a costly and unlikely endeavor. Now, however, it is looking more and more likely that UND will lose the Fighting Sioux nickname.
Englestad died in 2002 so he will never see the arena post Fighting Sioux nickname, should it come to that. I personally would like to see the nickname and logo kept. It is part of history and is meant to honor the Sioux nation, not defame it.
The arena is an outstanding place to watch hockey games but I was not impressed with the acoustics of a concert I attended there. Tickets to men's hockey games can be hard to come by, but it is easy to watch women's hockey games. There is parking within a short walking distance, or you can take a shuttle bus from several locations around town.
Part of the Misadventures returning back to school travel blog
Part of the list Grand Forks, North Dakota
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