The coronavirus pandemic has limited Raymond J. Bourque Arena’s ability to host non-Endicott events, but the rink is still offering programs for Endicott students.
Gameplay may have been put on a temporary hold for both the men’s and women’s ice hockey teams, but the teams have still been able to use the ice over the past few months.
Also, the rink’s normal student-skate sessions have been available on Monday through Thursdays throughout the fall.
“We are focused on providing our Endicott programs with a safe, top level experience, even during these unprecedented times,” said Director of Ice Arena Operations Jay Lilly.
The Raymond J. Bourque Arena has cemented itself as a reliable venue for sports for the past six years.
Despite being home to both the men’s and women’s NCAA programs, the rink usually hosts youth hockey, three high school programs, and various local hockey organizations.
The location may not be welcoming the Gull faithful to games this semester, but Lilly is hopeful that action can return to the rink soon.
“We are hopeful that our teams can compete after winter break,” Lilly said.
The loss of revenue isn’t ideal, Lilly said. However, the group’s focus is on creating a safe environment for the programs they’re still able to offer.
“We want to provide our student athletes with a safe environment while following detailed Covid protocols for everything from the usage of common spaces, additional sanitization, to even socially distancing in the locker rooms,” Lilly said.
The rink has hosted many events throughout the years. Senior Brian Hines said he enjoys the rink’s student-skate sessions, and is hopeful for games soon.
“I love going down there, it’s just a fun time,” Hines said. “It’s too bad the teams couldn’t compete, but they’ll be back.”
Lilly said it’s imperative that everyone wears a mask, practices social distancing, and follows the established health protocols so action can return.
“We can’t wait to welcome the public and the Endicott community back into the facility and cheer on our Gulls,” Lilly said.
For more information about the rink, please visit: https://www.ecgulls.com/facilities/raymond_j_bourque_arena/index