World’s Largest Mobile Rink Refrigeration Unit Begins Trek to Fenway Thursday

by NESN Staff

December 2, 2009

With the 2010 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic less than a month away, the hype surrounding the most anticipated event in Boston is starting to rise.

But the most important part of this extraordinary experiment has yet to begin. As it stands now, Fenway Park is still a baseball field — an unbelievable, beautiful Mecca of America's past time at that. However, come Dec. 10, that will begin to change as the world?s largest mobile rink refrigeration unit ? a custom-built, 53-foot truck that houses the specialized equipment used to make the ice for the event ? will pull up to Yawkey Way.

The branded truck will depart on Dec. 3 from Wayne Gretzky?s Restaurant in Toronto and begin a journey of more than 800 miles that will include stops in Philadelphia and New York and finishes at Fenway — the last stop to the NHL's "Road to the 2010 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic.?

Aboard the truck at each stop will be NHL Facilities Operations Manager Dan Craig, the man tasked with maintaining the uniformity and quality of the ice surfaces in the more than 30 arenas in which NHL hockey is played. Recognized as one of the world?s foremost authorities on building and maintaining outdoor skating surfaces, Craig is responsible for transforming Fenway Park into a world class ice hockey rink on which the Bruins and Flyers will renew their fierce rivalry.

Upon the truck?s arrival at Fenway Park at noon ET on Dec. 10, Craig will be available to talk about the challenges and nuances of transforming 20,000 gallons of water into a sheet of ice two inches thick on the venerable ballpark?s playing field. Craig also will update media on preparations for the 2010 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic and discuss the tools and technology being deployed to build the rink and ensure that the ice quality remains at the highest level.

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