MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) -- The game is over and the crowds are gone, but Kraft Hockeyville will have a lasting impact here, starting with name recognition for Lakeview Arena.
The game is over and the crowds are gone, but Kraft Hockeyville will have a lasting impact here, starting with name recognition for Lakeview Arena.
"Being named Kraft Hockeyville USA, that was a huge boost for us," Marquette Parks and Recreation Coordinator Andrew MacIver said. "We noticed right away in some of the camps that there was a lot more kids coming out. Marquette Figure Skating Club had a lot more kids show up for some of their learn-to-skate camps."
The game was also a huge draw for out-of-town tourists. Two hotels in town were completely booked out.
"Most of the hotels in Marquette were full this weekend. We had thousands of people downtown for the parade, thousands of people downtown for the community barbecue," Travel Marquette Community Relations and Marketing Coordinator Anna Dravland said. "The visibility of it was so significant, you couldn't go anywhere and not know something was going on."
Throughout the voting process, the NHL helped draw national attention to Lakeview Arena on social media. The hockey organization put Marquette on the map for millions of fans across the country, who voted for it to become Hockeyville. The game itself generated some positive publicity.
"I thought it was really good," Carolina Hurricanes Head Coach Bill Peters said. "It started in the morning when the guys had the pregame skate, and the place was full. Just a real good vibe in the city and just outstanding. I thought Marquette did a great job and the arena looked wonderful."
Marquette continues to be a hockey destination past the game last night. The status of Marquette as a Kraft Hockeyville will likely bring in more tourism in the future.