MCCA Celebrates 10th Anniversary of Reopening and Renaming the MassMutual Center
MCCA, Centerplate, and Spectra donate $10,000 to local organizations to commemorate the occasion
Springfield, MA – Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno joined Massachusetts Convention Center Authority (MCCA) leadership, board members, and partners to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the reopening and renaming of the MassMutual Center (MMC) in Springfield, Massachusetts. Formerly the Springfield Civic Center, in 2005 the MCCA completed a substantial reconstruction project to vastly improve the facility and allow the Pioneer Valley to compete in the meetings and convention marketplace – generating significant economic impact in the region and the City of Springfield.
In order to commemorate the occasion, the MCCA together with Centerplate, the MMC’s food service partner, and Spectra Venue Management, which manages the MMC, donated ten, $1,000 contributions to the following local organizations:
• American Red Cross – Western Massachusetts Chapter
• YMCA of Greater Springfield
• Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield
• Friends of the Homeless
• Rays of Hope
• Urban League of Springfield
• Community Music School of Springfield
• Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts
• Center for Human Development
“The MCCA and the Commonwealth’s investment in the MassMutual Center has been a major boost for Springfield’s economy and our economic development strategy,” said Mayor Domenic J. Sarno of Springfield. “Under the MCCA’s supervision, the MassMutual Center has been successfully hosting sporting events, concerts, meetings and conventions all of which have contributed to creating and supporting jobs while making Springfield a more vibrant and exciting city.”
“Through the MCCA’s investment, Mayor Sarno’s support, the highly professional Spectra management and Centerplate teams, and the hard working staff, the MassMutual Center continues to be a major economic driver for Springfield and the Pioneer Valley region,” said Fred Peterson, interim executive director of the MCCA. “The MCCA’s mission is to generate economic impact through our facilities, which is why we continue to make strategic investments over time and have been such careful stewards of this very important facility in Western Massachusetts.”
In 2003, the MCCA began the $71 million, two-year expansion and improvement of the MassMutual Center, which added approximately 147,000 square feet of new building for convention, exhibition, and meeting space and approximately 215,000 square feet of renovated space. The upgrades also included new stadium seating, club seating, scoreboard, and locker rooms to accommodate professional sporting events.
Just recently, the MCCA announced that it was underway with more than $3.2 million in technology upgrades at the MassMutual Center to replace existing digital displays, including a new state-of-the art video display in the arena, and upgrade lighting and displays both in the arena and outside the facility to improve the venue for sporting events and concerts. These upgrades come as MGM is planning to build its new gaming complex proximate to the facility.
“The MCCA Board of Directors takes special care in making sure that the MassMutual Center is given the resources and support it needs to continue its role in contributing to the growth of the Western Massachusetts economy,” said John McDonnell, chair, MCCA Board of Directors.
“With the MCCA as a strong partner and the MassMutual Center as a popular venue, Springfield and Western Mass. continue to build on its cultural and tourism assets and compete as a top convention destination in New England,” said Mary Kay Wydra, president of the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau. “We would like to thank the MCCA for its continued support and investment in the MassMutual Center and making it a premier venue and economic engine for the area.”
The MassMutual Center has been successfully operated by Spectra Venue Management for the last ten years. In its current configuration, which includes an arena, meeting rooms and ballrooms, and exhibition space, the MMC is able to host a number of notable events that include the AHL Springfield Falcon’s hockey games and other indoor sports, concerts, exhibitions and trade shows, and major meetings – such as the 64th National Square Dance Convention last June, which brought over 4,000 dancers from 49 states and eight countries to the region. In 2011, the MMC played a vital role in the aftermath of the tornado that hit Springfield when the MCCA, working with the City of Springfield, turned the facility into a temporary shelter for hundreds of families left homeless.
“The MCCA and the City of Springfield continue to be great partners in the success of the MassMutual Center and its ability to compete with other arenas and convention centers in the Northeast,” said MassMutual Center general manager, Stacey Church, of Spectra Venue Management. “Our team at the MassMutual Center is proud of the work we do and the benefits we are delivering to Springfield and the region.”