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Panthers Debut Enhanced Game Experience

by Staff Writer / Florida Panthers

Numerous Entertainment Enhancements on Tap for 2006-07 Season

SUNRISE, Fla. – Florida Panthers fans attending games this season at the BankAtlantic Center can expect significant changes to their overall entertainment experience, which all kicked off on opening night vs. the Boston Bruins on Friday, Oct. 6. Numerous new entertainment enhancements have been made to solidify the Panthers new marketing theme "It's Always Like This."

"Our organization has worked extremely hard over the summer months to enhance our fans overall entertainment experience when they arrive at the BankAtlantic Center for a hockey game," SSE chief operating officer Michael Yormark said. "I encourage all our fans to get in their seats early in order to take in the entire evening's festivities. It promises to be an exciting night of non-stop entertainment, highlighted by the return of the Florida Panthers to the ice at the BankAtlantic Center."

Some of the evening's special festivities include:

There are currently less than 1,000 tickets available for Opening Night. That means time is running out for fans to catch the debut of the brand new Florida Panthers game presentation opening video and graphics package. The Panthers will be one of the only teams in the NHL to feature different game presentations for weekend and weekday games. But Opening Night is the fans only chance to catch the full length opening video.

World class opera singer Valerian Rominski will sing the national anthem on opening night. Rominski is playing the King of Egypt, one of the leads in the upcoming play Aida. In addition, rock band Nonpoint will perform live accompanied by a laser and video show with special effects. Nonpoint was recently featured on the Miami Vice movie soundtrack featuring their cover of Phil Collins hit 'In the Air Tonight.'

The Panthers Ice Dancers by Sziro Jewelry will also make their debut on Friday night. The Ice Dancers will help distribute give-a-ways, assist with intermission activities and be on hand at player autograph sessions. The Dancers will also perform periodically on the Sziro Jewelry Stage, located inside the lower bowl at section 109. The Ice Dancers are directed by Laura Davis and Cassandra Hall.

Stanley's incredible FRIENDS are a brand new group of hockey themed mascots – an alligator, flamingo, parrot, ibis and young panther – that will perform on the Spirit Airlines Funway and take part in other facets of the game presentation on Friday night.

Showtime for Stanley's incredible FRIENDS is 6 pm. The festivities start with a dancing performance from Stanley and his friends on the Spirit Airlines Funway. Once doors open (6:30 pm for a 7:30 pm face-off) some lucky fans may also have the opportunity to eat dinner with the mascots in the Chairman's Club, while all fans can meet and greet the characters in the BankAtlantic Center food courts during intermission.

Fans can also expect to find new menu items featured throughout the BankAtlantic Center. The WCI Communities Private Club now will have rotating menu items and a self-serve popcorn machine. Concession stands will now include kids meals that include corn dogs, as well as kosher items for all to enjoy. New souvenir beverage cups with Panthers player's images on them will also be available at select concession stands. Also new to the BankAtlantic Center this season is a series of Heart Rock Sushi Bars, and increased points of sale to provide better and more convenient service for some of the more popular food and drink items.

The Spirit Airlines Funway will again be the place to go for pregame entertainment. On Opening Night fans can check out the 93 Rock road show, local rock band the Painkillers and circus-like entertainers including stilt walkers, fire-eaters and jugglers.

The MetroPCS Stage is back for another season and will feature the best in local entertainment including bands, cheerleaders, dance teams and singing groups.

Special Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies will take place for the new Patron Tequila Platinum Club and the Eastern Financial District.

BankAtlantic will give away 10,000 Panthers-themed t-shirts at the game.

Sunrise Sports & Entertainment is the premier company of its kind in South Florida. Home to more than 185 events annually and the Florida Panthers Hockey Club, the BankAtlantic Center is consistently a top 15 worldwide venue according to Pollstar. The BankAtlantic Center welcomes more than two million guests each year and is also the home of the Sinatra Theatre presented by BankAtlantic and three monthly South Florida publications: Live On Stage Credentials, Unrestricted and Panthers Insider.

The 2006-2007 Florida Panthers season is presented by the Seminole Casino - Coconut Creek. Opening Night is Friday, Oct. 6 vs. the Boston Bruins. Drop That Puck!

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