Vermont-Massachusetts, New Hampshire-Maine to highlight Frozen Fenway sequel

Outdoor hockey games have been the “flavor of the week” for the last few years in college hockey, and that won’t keep Hockey East from once again joining the fray.

Multiple sources have confirmed that Hockey East will announce on Friday that it will host Frozen Fenway, a sequel to a remarkably successful event the league hosted in January 2010 at Boston’s historic Fenway Park.

This season’s event, which will take place on Saturday, Jan. 7, will pit state schools against one another, with Vermont facing off against Massachusetts in the early game and New Hampshire squaring off against Maine in the nightcap. UMass and Maine will relinquish their home games to facilitate the event.

In 2010, Boston College and Boston University faced each other in the inaugural Frozen Fenway. That game, which sold out in minutes, also featured the New Hampshire and Northeastern women playing in a
late-afternoon tilt before the BC-BU nightcap.

This year’s game will hardly be a guaranteed sellout. In 2010, the BC-BU game took place a week after Fenway hosted the NHL’s Winter Classic between the Philadelphia Flyers and the Boston Bruins. Tickets for the Winter Classic were in such demand that the BC-BU game became an highly coveted ticket in its own right.

Similar to the 2010 Winter Classic, the ice sheet at Fenway will be used for multiple ancillary events prior. Sources report that Boston residents will once again be eligible for an open skate at the park. There could also be a number of private events that could offset the costs of building the temporary ice surface.

Unlike 2010, Dan Craig, the NHL’s “ice guru,” will not oversee the event, which takes place just six days after this year’s Winter Classic. There is no information on which company will build and oversee the ice surface.

Further information on tickets will be available after Frozen Fenway’s formal announcement on Friday.