Why the Colorado Avalanche Should Host a Fan Fest


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The Avs Nation is the greatest. We may not be as historical as some teams’ fan bases because the Avalanche are relatively new. We may not sell out the season in the span of a day. However, the core of Colorado Avalanche fans who exist are as fervent as any disciples.

For that reason alone, the Colorado Avalanche should host a fan festival.

Fan Festivals

I first discovered the idea of NHL fan festivals through the Chicago Blackhawks. The Blackhawks, of course, are known for the size of their fan base. Except…. my Chicagoan friends told me just 10 years ago they were practically giving away tickets.

Now, to be fair, since then the Blackhawks have won two Stanley Cups. That could explain why their fan base is so large, and why they hold an annual three-day convention. Except it does not explain why the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators also hold festivals — those teams haven’t won anything in a long time. In Ottawa’s case, never.

All right, those are Canadian markets, and Canadians do love their hockey. How about Floridians, though? The Tampa Bay Lighting haven’t won a championship since 2004, yet they hold a successful fan fest.

In fact, fan festival serve to build support for the team. The Colorado Avalanche marketers haven’t been doing as great a job of that as they could, else captain Gabriel Landeskog’s face would be plastered across this city.

In short, a Colorado Avalanche fan festival would build support for the team.

Coloradans Ready for Fan Festival

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  • An upside of the Avalanche not being a great team in the Sacco years is that tickets were cheap and easy to come by.Those days are fading fast. See, I clearly remember the early years, when tickets were expensive and sold out quickly.

    We’re not there yet, but the first home game is already sold out, and there are only standing room tickets left. As far as the training camp days, even the rookie practices were well-attended. As for the final day of camp — well, seats were highly contested to watch the final scrimmage. The last day was a zoo.

    The annual Burgundy and White scrimmage was also very popular. In years previous, everyone was checking their rosters to even remember who the returning players were. This year, fans glanced every now and again to make sure they recalled #16 was Duncan Siemens, #71 Borna Rendulic, #41 Cody Corbett. Jarome Iginla, Brad Stuart, Daniel Briere — those names and numbers were already memorized.

    Colorado is also unique in its sports fan population. It’s essentially assumed that man, woman, child and usually dogs are fans of a team. I’ve been at wine tastings with groups of women, and the talk has turned to the season the Colorado Rockies are having. And the Denver Broncos? Forget about it — they’re a huge draw, win or lose.

    Landeskog has remarked on more than one occasion that he’s getting stopped in the grocery store by fans. Fans line up after games and practices for autographs.

    Coloradans love sports. The Avalanche should be cashing in on that.

    Possible Fan Fest Activities

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    The success of a Colorado Avalanche fan fest is guaranteed by the alumni alone. Patrick Roy still gets the biggest buzz when his name is announced at the beginning of games, and he just so happens to be the Avalanche’s head coach. Joe Sakic will forever be a sports hero, as will Adam Foote, both of whom are still associated with the team. (I mean, Joe Sakic’s new title is Avalanche Guru or Lord of the Avs, or something like that.)

    If the Avalanche could entice Peter Forsberg to return, the fan fest might reach riot proportions. Even without him, though, any kind of Avalanche alumni activities are widely popular. So, the Colorado Avalanche fan festival would definitely have to include alumni activities.

    Perhaps the Avalanche want to start small. The Blackhawks host an opening ceremony and two days filled with activities. The Avalanche might start with the opening ceremony and just one day of events. They definitely want to include the following types of activities:

    • Autograph sessions
    • Locker room tours
    • Press box tours
    • Q & A sessions
    • Photo opportunities
    • Memorabilia sales
    • Gear sales

    Those last two could really drive the finances of the fan fest. Sell a selection of unique gear and have the regular fan gear at a special price. Bobble heads are a must. Then, include a selection of vendors selling game-worn and other memorabilia.

    Of course, the opening ceremonies or Q & A session would


    to include a dance off

    à la

    Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews:

    Come on, Avs Nation, how much would you pay to see star center Matt Duchene and wonder kid Nate MacKinnon face off with dance moves? Dutchy with some hee-haw action, MacK trying some house moves — it would go down in the annals of history.

    So, Colorado Avalanche, please plan a fan festival for next year. The Avs Nation is ready.