Penn State celebrates Pegula Ice Arena groundbreaking

Penn State celebrated the official groundbreaking for Pegula Ice Arena on Friday as coaches, fans and dignitaries gathered at the Penn State field hockey complex to mark the occasion.

Penn State president Rodney Erickson, board of trustees vice chairman Karen Peetz, acting director of athletics Dr. Dave Joyner and Terry Pegula, who along with his wife, Kim, donated $88 million in September 2010 for the construction of a new, state-of-the-art facility and the elevation of the hockey programs to the Division I level, were all in attendance.

“I’m proud to officially mark the construction of Pegula Ice Arena,” said Erickson in his opening remarks. “This is truly a momentous day for Penn State, our student-athletes, the local community and ice hockey fans everywhere. Our goal is to make this arena, and the vast array of activities to be held in it, the national model by which all other programs are measured.”

“This groundbreaking is an extraordinary moment in the history of Penn State intercollegiate athletics, and it’s an opportunity to express the gratitude of our students, our fans and the entire Penn State community for Terry and Kim Pegula’s generosity and vision,” added Joyner. “The Pegula Ice Arena is impressive, not just for what it will be, but for what it will do.”

Following the individual remarks, the group then joined Kim Pegula, associate athletic director for ice arena and hockey development Joe Battista, head hockey coaches Josh Brandwene (women) and Guy Gadowsky (men), senior vice president for development and alumni relations Rod Kirsch and Buffalo Sabres chief development officer Cliff Benson for the ceremonial dig.

Pegula Ice Arena will be located near the corner of University Drive and Curtin Road, across from the Bryce Jordan Center and will be completed in time for the 2013-14 season, coinciding with the men’s and women’s hockey teams’ second year at the varsity level. The men’s team will join the Big Ten for the 2013-14 season, while the women’s squad will begin its second year as a member of College Hockey America.