SANTA CLARA (KCBS) — The countdown is on to the National Hockey League’s first ever outdoor game to be played in Northern California. A refrigeration truck that will help make all the ice arrived Monday afternoon at Levi’s Stadium.
The specially designed 53-foot-long long truck pulled into the Levi’s Stadium parking lot less than two weeks before the NHL Stadium Series match between the San Jose Sharks and Los Angeles Kings on Feb. 23.
NHL Senior Director of Facilities Operations Dan Craig quickly noticed that the temperature in Santa Clara is above normal for this time of year.
“Everyone’s a challenge. We don’t know what challenge we’re going to be thrown at here and Mother Nature always wins–she always does,” he told KCBS. “We just try to find a way to maneuver around her that’s all.”
But Craig said that regardless of the weather conditions, the game will go on as scheduled. He said it was never considered to have an afternoon contest in the Bay Area, which is why the Sharks and King will have their opening face off at 7 p.m. on Feb. 21.
Jim Mercurio, the 49ers’ vice president of stadium operations and security, said it was a collaborative effort to get the game at Levi’s.
“It’s another first for Levi’s Stadium; so from the standpoint, we want to make sure that we reach out to the fans that are coming here to get out here early, come out and enjoy the festivities and pay attention to the directions,” he said.
About 20,000 gallons of recycled water will be used to create the ice surface.