Seattle’s new National Hockey League team will play the franchise’s first preseason game Sunday in front of the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena’s largest crowd since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’d like to say that we’re back, but it’s nice to take that step forward and have this going on,” said Matt Meyer, director of entertainment at the Spokane Arena. “It’s great for the city.”
A sold-out crowd of about 10,500 fans is expected to watch the Seattle Kraken take on the Vancouver Canucks.
About 2,400 of the 10,500 expected fans will be from out of town, which will provide economic benefits for hotels, restaurants and other businesses in Spokane, Meyer said.
All attendees 12 and older must be vaccinated and bring physical or digital proof of vaccination with a matching photo identification.
A vaccination card, a photo of the attendee’s vaccination card on a mobile device or documentation of vaccination from a health care provider’s electronic health record or state Immunization Information System record are acceptable proofs of full vaccination.
Those with a qualifying medical or religious exemption that prevents vaccination can attend with proof of a negative COVID-19 test result. The test must be administered within 72 hours of the game. Rapid tests must be administered within eight hours of the event, which starts at 6 p.m.
A printed document from the test provider or laboratory, or an email or text message from the test provider or lab are acceptable proofs of a negative COVID-19 test. The information provided must include the name of the person tested, type of test performed and date of the negative result. A matching photo ID is required.
Proof of a negative test will not be required for children under 12.
Meyer said he recommends fans arrive early and be patient because of the extra time it will take staff to check for vaccination status. He said doors typically open an hour before events start, but the Arena increased that one-hour standard by an extra 30 minutes.
Meyer said the Arena has prepared for Sunday’s Kraken game with other events, such as the recent Jason Aldean concert.
The Arena has mobile-only ticketing so fans should ensure they have digital tickets available prior to entering the building.
Concessions will be cashless. Meyer said the Arena received federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES) funds to provide digital ticketing and cashless concessions.
Tickets to the game are available for purchase at www.ticketswest.com.
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