Dow Event Center
The Dow Event Center (formerly known as The Saginaw County Event Center, formerly known as The Saginaw Civic Center) is located in downtown Saginaw, Michigan. The center consists of three parts: Heritage Theater, a meeting facility formerly known as Unity Hall, and Wendler Arena, an ice rink. It also houses the OHL junior ice hockey team named Saginaw Spirit. In 2008 served its first year as host to the Indoor Football League's now defunct Saginaw Sting. The facility has housed a number of hockey teams in the past, such as the Saginaw LumberKings, Saginaw Wheels and both the IHL and UHL incarnations of the Saginaw Gears. Wendler Arena has a capacity of 7,600 people for concerts (without the ice), and 5,500 for hockey games. Heritage Theater has a capacity of 2,276 people. Originally built in 1972 as part of an urban development program, the center is the only existing structure left. Most of the other buildings were razed in the 1980s due to many problems, including health risks and foreclosure/ bankruptcy. For a time in the 1990s, the facility nearly faced foreclosure and bankruptcy due to lack of funds provided by the city. The facility underwent a series of much-needed renovations in early 2000s, mainly in hopes for a better facility to host their newly-acquired hockey team. The naming rights of the facility were transferred in September 2004 to The Dow Chemical Company , headquartered in nearby Midland. The center was used two times during the summer of 2004 as a center for Republican political rallies in support for the re-election of U.S. President George W. Bush. Voters transferred the ownership from the City of Saginaw to Saginaw County on May 8, 2001. The city then closed the facility on June 30, 2001, and the county reopened it on July 1. The county then appointed SMG Worldwide to manage the facility, and started updating and renovating the building. The total cost of the renovations was tagged at $17 million, and they were completed in 2003. Currently, the center houses the Spirit, and hosts many events, concerts, political rallies, and even graduations. Trade shows also take place here; the complex has 25,000 square feet (2,300 m 2) of space at Wendler Arena. It hosted the third WWF In Your House pay-per-view on September 24, 1995. Jehovah's Witnesses District Conventions are held annually at the Dow Event Center. Starting in mid-June, and ending in early July, 3 day conventions held on every weekend in that time will occur. The Jehovah's Witnesses first started using the building in 2005, after rumors of demolition for the Pontiac Silverdome raised concern over where meetings would be held, as the Silverdome was the previous venue.


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