More than 8,500 fans turned out to Scottrade Center on Saturday, but the puck doesn’t drop on an official game until Sunday.
Fans packed the arena at 14th & Clark to get a glimpse of their 2007-08 St. Louis Blues. For most of them, it was the first opportunity to see new additions Paul Kariya and Erik Johnson wearing a Bluenote.
As an added bonus, fans were able to participate in games and activities on the concourse, including slap shot competitions, jousts and bungee runs. Throughout the day, Blues players were visible in the concourse, greeting fans, signing autographs and simply talking hockey.
If Saturday’s turnout was any indication, the Blues are back.
“Kudos to the Blues organization for a great event,” said Blues forum user EJohnson6 on stlouisblues.com. “My family and I were there for 6.5 hours and had a blast.”
The Scottrade Center doors were open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fans received free hot dogs, soda and popcorn at the concession stands all day long. Blues players and alumni were in the box office selling tickets to fans as well. Saturday was the first day single game tickets were available to the general public.
In perhaps the closest thing to game action since April, fans were treated to a scrimmage between Team Plager and Team Sutter
on Saturday. Fans stood for the shootout following the scrimmage, where Kariya scored and Johnson shattered a water bottle with his shot.
“FANfest was a dynamic event that exceeded everyone's expectations," said Dave Bullock, the Blues' Senior Vice President of Consumer Sales and Marketing. "Fans got an incredible opportunity to see that the St. Louis Blues organization will do whatever it takes to get them back."
Season ticket holders were given access to the mezzanine level for exclusive autographs sessions and an hour-long Q&A session with Blues head coach Andy Murray.
And if that wasn’t enough, the Blues officially unveiled their new uniforms
to the public before the 11:30 scrimmage.