March 11, 2016 Heather James

Teamwork Gives St. Louis a Reason To Look Forward to Next Winter

Teamwork Gives St. Louis a Reason To Look Forward to Next Winter

By Andy Likes, TVG Vice President

St. Louis has a rich sports history. While some teams have come and gone, the St. Louis Cardinals and the St. Louis Blues have stood the test of time, winning divisions, championships and fans.

St. Louis fans are loyal – and our trust and pride were damaged when the St. Louis Rams recently pulled the moving vans up to the building now formerly known as the Edward Jones Dome and headed west for more money and the glitz of Hollywood. But while the memory of the Rams will eventually become fleeting for St. Louisans, a recent announcement promises us the opportunity to make some truly unforgettable new memories.

A few months ago, the Rams called out St. Louis, saying we couldn’t work together to get a stadium deal. This week’s announcement to hold the NHL Bridgestone Winter Classic in St. Louis shows that many diverse groups in our city can work together to make big things happen.

This past Wednesday night, March 9, the Blues, the Cardinals, the NHL and NBC Sports announced that the 2017 Bridgestone Winter Classic will be held January 2 at Busch Stadium. The Winter Classic is now one of the most iconic events of the season for the NHL. Its location in St. Louis coincides with the 50th Anniversary of our St. Louis Blues.

The Winter Classic has become more popular than the NHL All-Star Game because the game actually counts in the standings. It will be a “home” game for the Blues, even though it’s blocks away from the Scottrade Center at the home of the Cardinals.

In past years, the Winter Classic has been held at some marquee stadiums around the country, including Wrigley Field in Chicago, Fenway Park in Boston and Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, which housed more than 100,000 fans for outdoor hockey.

The video that the Blues released to announce the game shows the teamwork between the Cardinals and Blues on this event. It’s a tremendous example of storytelling and was viewed more than half a million times on social media in just its first 24 hours.

The Winter Classic isn’t a Super Bowl, but it will definitely have that look and feel. It will be broadcast to a national TV audience on NBC. Media from around the country will cover not only the game and the teams involved, but also our beloved Gateway City.

The announcement is a huge win for St. Louis, which beat out many other cities in the US and Canada. The Winter Classic could sell out even before tickets go on sale to the general public, and could be a tougher ticket to find than a Cardinals World Series ticket.

We’ll need to wait about nine months to see the total impact of the game on St. Louis and the NHL standings, but we can already see how this has brought our city together.

The Vandiver Group is a strategic communications firm that’s proud to call St. Louis our home. We salute the teamwork it took to bring the 2017 Bridgestone Winter Classic to St. Louis next year.


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