Solider Field, monument of Greco-Roman architecture and modern façades, has been home to the Chicago Bears for more than 40 years. This year, the oldest NFL stadium hosts its first NHL game ever, a showdown between the home team Chicago Blackhawks and Pittsburgh Penguins.This meeting is the final game of the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series.
Earlier this season, the Anaheim Ducks defeated the Los Angeles Kings at Dodger Stadium, Jan. 25, while the New York Rangers swept the two games at Yankee Stadium (Jan. 26 & 29), beating the New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders. The Blackhawks and Penguins will square off on March 1 in the regular season matchup.
With a larger venue comes much greater attendance numbers, and reportedly more than 60,000 people are expected to attend the game. Chicago will be rolling out the red carpet for the game, promoting the Blackhawks all over the city, getting fans excited for another popular outdoor winter contest. This will be the second time Chicago has hosted an outdoor hockey contest, as the Detroit Redwings faced off against the Blackhawks at Wrigley Field in the 2009 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic. The city was also awarded the 2017 NCAA Frozen Four Championship, further establishing itself as a hockey mecca.
It's a historic event for an elite sports town with a loyal and exuberant fan base, one whose hockey appetite must be sated after many players return from the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia. It's also a momentous game in the NHL's Stadium Series, an event perpetrated to expand interest in the sport.
Chicago and Pittsburgh, both leaders of their respective divisions, will look to the widely scrutinized Stadium Series game as a jump-off point to build momentum toward the playoffs. If you missed your chance to buy tickets for the game, here are some great places to watch the game with fellow Blackhawks fans:
22 W. Hubbard
A Blackhawks bar through and through, the Hawks brought the cup to this hockey fan haven earlier last year. Rockit Bar and Grill offers casual American cuisine that is a stellar companion to any and all brews consumed during this year's stadium series.
1061 W. Madison / 1415 W. Fullerton
Beer Bistro opened in 2005 and "loves food, people and beer." It has a unique beer selection and a knowledgeable staff. On game day, choose from 20 drafts on tap and more than 100 other beer selections by the bottle. Flatscreen TVs line the walls with no obstructed views to watch the game.
351 W. Hubbard St.
Watch the game in class, comfort and style; more than 20 HD TVs and state-of-the-art sound system pack in the excitement. Drink specials are available for every Blackhawks broadcast, so The Grid will keep fans returning well after the Penguins matchup.
3458 N. Lincoln Ave.
This official Blackhawks bar has 17 beers on tap, 35 more in bottles, serving a variety of drink specials on game days. Famous for its "Ryan Burger," Finley Dunne's food doesn't disappoint, so chow down as you work up an appetite watching the game.
1970 N. Lincoln Ave.
The Stanley Cup itself has graced this bar in Lincoln Park, with crowds reaching big numbers when the Blackhawks are playing. Great food and drinks are served here, so you'll leave plenty satisfied after Chicago takes the Stadium Series finale.