MassMutual Center
The MassMutual Center is a multi-purpose arena and convention center, in downtown Springfield, Massachusetts, USA. Built in the city's center, the facility opened in 1972 as the Springfield Civic Center and was at the time considered to be the largest arena in the region. It was owned and operated by the City of Springfield for eighteen years, before going into private hands for the following next six years. In 1996, it reverted to city control. A few years later, the Massachusetts Legislature authorized a major renovation of the facility and transferred ownership to the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA). The project included a renovation of the 8,000 seat arena and construction of a new 100,000 sq. ft. convention center facing Main Street where a plaza and bank once occupied. In 2005, the Center was renamed when Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company entered into a naming rights agreement for the arena and convention center. Its grand opening occurred on October 1, 2005. It is home to the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League and the Springfield Armor of the NBA Development League. It is nicknamed "The Nest", because it is home to the Falcons. The arena will be hosting the 2012-2014 MAAC Basketball Championships.

In 1997, the City of Springfield transferred ownership of the facility to the Massachusetts Legislature in which they announced plans for a renovation and expansion of the facility. In 1998, the Legislature turned ownership of the building over to the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA). In the fall of 2003, the project was publicly announced and demolition of the bank sitting next to the building, along with the facility's plaza and exhibit hall began. In the fall of 2005, the $71 million renovation project was completed. The renovation included new seats, handrails, signage, sound system, HVAC system, plumbing, and electrical to the existing arena. The arena floor was redone with new pipelines for the ice rink and new chillers were installed. The project also included 222 club seats, a bar and lounge, clubroom, an executive suite, along with larger restrooms and 11 newly refurbrished concession stands. A new box office and lobby were also added. The entire project was funded by city and state tax payers and other state funds. The arena box office is located on Falcons Way. The arena has 3 levels:
  • Level 1- Box office, Falcons office, Falcons team store.
  • Level 2- Concourse level, lower and upper bowl seating, Center Grille restaurant, Slapshot Bar.
  • Level 3- Press Box, Executive Perch.
The arena is accessible from gates on Falcons Way. An outer concourse with concession stands, souvenir stands, a restaurant, a bar, and restrooms surrounds the seating bowl. Fans can access the seating from gates under sections 2, 6, 8, 10, 12, 16, 17, 21, 23, 25, between sections 27 and 28, and 31. Upper level sections on the corners near the suite Level 4 can access Levels 3, 2, and 1 via elevators and stairs. The arena is ADA accessible, with handicap seating located in the inner concourse behind Level 2 lower bowl sections 2, 6, 8, 10, 12, 21, 23, 25, 27, and 31. ADA seating can also be found behind Level 4 upper bowl sections 21, 26, 27, 28, and 29. The lower seating bowl ranges from rows A to G. Row AA is the row along the boards on ice level. Row AA can be found below all sections except for sections 31, 1, 2, 8, 9, 10, 16, 17, 23, 24, and 25. The upper bowl ranges from rows H to W, with no rows I and O. Some upper level sections have handicap seating on the lower rows. Row X is the row at the top of sections 21, 22, 26, 27, 28, and 29. The Executive Perch is located behind upper level sections 19 and 20, where up to 50 people can enjoy the action from this suite with catering and HD televisions on Level 4, adjacent to the press box. Behind Section 1 on the outer concourse, ticket info and contest sign ups can be found, with team staff working the tables. Permanent concession stands are on the inner part towards the arena. The restaurant, bar and restrooms are on the outer side.

Convention Center
With renovations to the existing arena, a brand new state-of-the-art convention center was added. With 100,000 square feet (9,300 m 2), it is the largest convention center in Western Massachusetts. It includes two exhibition halls, which total over 40,000 square feet (3,700 m 2), 3 ballrooms that total 15,000 square feet (1,400 m 2), 5 meeting rooms that total some 9,000 square feet (840 m 2), and 21,000 square feet (2,000 m 2) of pre-function space. Its unique design connects both the convention center and arena to add an additional 19,000 square feet (1,800 m 2) of floor space. The convention center is able to host galas, weddings, consumer and trade shows, concerts, conventions, conferences, and many other functions of various sizes.

The arena hosted the Hartford Whalers of the National Hockey League, while the Hartford Civic Center was undergoing renovations, because of a 1978 roof collapse. It also hosted the 19th WWF In Your House pay-per-view in 1997. It has also hosted WWE Monday Night RAW and two WWE SmackDown! shows; the first one was on October 26, 1999 aired for that Thursday and the second was on December 13, 2005 aired for that Friday. The building has hosted an American Hockey League franchise, since it opened in 1972. Between 1972 and 1993, the building hosted the Springfield Indians franchise, which is now known as the Peoria Rivermen. Since 1994, the Center has been the site of home games of the Springfield Falcons, the AHL affiliate of the Columbus Blue Jackets. The building, located in the "Birthplace of Basketball", has also hosted numerous NCAA Men's Division II Basketball Championships, first in 1977, then from 1980”“94, and finally 2006 through 2011 (the tournament will move to the Kentucky suburbs of Cincinnati in 2012 and 2013). The UMass Minutemen basketball team has used the building for a number of home games in recent years under head coach Derek Kellogg, a Springfield native.


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