Thursday, April 11, 2019

Vipers Owner Happy With First Season; Eyes Upgrades For Kal Tire Place:

This is posted on the 107.5 Beach Radio website:

Vipers Owner Happy With First Season; Eyes Upgrades For Kal Tire Place

Vernon, BC, Canada / 1075 Beach Radio Vernon

Pete McIntyre

April 10, 2019 

The rookie co-owner of the Vernon Vipers says he “couldn’t be happier” with how his first season with the team has gone.

John Glen and his brother Tom brought the BC Hockey League club from the late Duncan Wray’s family in September.

“It’s been absolutely awesome. I’ve got to know the league. It’s a great league, and a league I have great respect for,” Glen said in an interview with Beach Radio News.

Glen, who owns a number of car dealerships in Canada along with his brother, says he’s been pleased with the fan support this season, which he attributes to success on the ice and getting the team out into the community.

“To be quite honest, we were a last place team until Christmas time, and we’ve had the fan support all year. I believe there is a couple of circumstances that led to that: number one was having some success on the ice, but number two was being visible in the community. And Brenda Stewart was the lead in that department, in the number of schools that we had our boys out to, and the various events, the Terry Fox Run, the Christmas Carnival, and those types of things don’t go unnoticed,” says Glen.

The Vipers have had five playoff crowds of 2,000 fans or more, including a sell-out of 3,205 for game 7 against Trail March 25th.

The Vipers visit the Prince George Spruce Kings for game 1 of the Fred Page Cup Friday, the Snakes’ first trip to the BCHL Final since 2014.

The Vipers, and their fans, would like to see improvements to Kal Tire Place to improve game presentation — with one popular suggestion being a video-capable score clock —  but Glen isn’t holding his breath.

“I will say this: dealing with the City, things don’t happen overnight, so there’s been ongoing dialogue with some of the things were looking to change and I’m confident at some point — and I don’t want to put a deadline or date on it — but we’ll be able to make some of those changes.”

Glen says a video clock would be expensive, and he has other upgrades he would like to see first.
“I think number one would be the lighting. I think we should be going to LED lighting where we can run a light show through some LED lights, and just brighten up the place. There is numerous areas where we need to improve.”

“Vipers owner John Glen talks about his first season as owner and what improvements he'd like to see at Kal Tire Place” 

Glen would also like the Vipers to get more office space in the building.

“As a franchise, I believe that we need more room just to get into the branding world and to get online. We’ve been gong back and forth with a new ticketing system which is online. Going back and forth with a marketer to get our clothing brand out there and those kinds of things. But it all takes room and that’s something were definitely short of and that’ part of the ongoing lease negotiations wit the City is to try and find some more room for the Vipers.”

Glen says it’s tight having three coaches and three office personnel in their current office space.

1 comment:

vipersdiehardfan said...

I have to agree with John Glen. A few years ago when Salmon Arm-the Shaw Centre replaced their lights with the new LED lights, what a difference. The South Okanagan Events Centre in Penticton also has the new LED lighting system that would be a big addition to Kal Tire Place. How about replacing the sound system in Kal Tire Place? The speakers are blown and the sound coming out is terrible. When they crank the music for warm up its blasting so loud you can't even hear the music its so muffled.

I really like the addition of the guy who plays the trumpet at the Vipers games during the playoffs. A great addition that adds some life to the rink and and gets the crowd into the game during whistles.

I wish the city would bring back the bar stools and chairs they had setup along the railings behind the visitors goal during the Royal Bank Cup. A place where you can sit down, have a cold one and something to eat and chat with your buddy, while still able to watch the game. I really like what they have done in Penticton at the South Okanagan Events Centre with their little beer gardens/setup. Kal Tire Place needs a little lounge area with some bar stools and tables for the fellows to sit down, have a cold one and catchup on old times, while still able to watch the game.

I would like to see more display cases added to the concourse of Kal Tire Place to add more history to the Okanagan Sports Hall of Fame. Maybe add some kind of display case or cases with just some Vernon Junior hockey memorabilia and history about the Vernon franchise. I think adding a Vernon junior hockey wall of fame like what the Penticton Vees have done, would be very classy and a great gesture on showing off the history and great legends that have played for Vernon over the years.

What about finishing off the hand railings around the isles at Kal Tire Place? They started installing hand rails on the one side of the rink, but have yet to finish and make their way around the remainder of the arena. I see a lot of elderly people struggle getting too and leaving their seats during Vipers games.

Vipers fans and Im pretty sure the Vipers would love to add a new jumbo tron/scoreboard to Kal Tire Place. Those aren't cheap and would cost a fortune. What about taking a look at what the Kelowna Rockets and Prospera Place has done with their scoreboard. It looks like they have just added large tv screens atop the scoreboard, making it look like a jumbo tron but still getting the same kind of feature out of it.