Author Archives: noisenation

I Remember My First Hockey Game Too…

… Probably because it was just last night.

The view from our seats.  Photo: Dan

The view from our seats. Photo: Dan

That’s right. My very first hockey game. There is a vague memory of being in Hershey in the early 80’s for a car show and accidentally stumbling upon a game, but this one I consider my first.

First off, thanks to Kram, DiPro (with family and friends) who invited me along. I could reveal to you DiPro’s parking lot secret.. but I won’t. See Kram’s post about parking for our official stance in that realm.

It was just as cool inside the arena as Kram had warned me about. I had a Steelhawk’s hooded sweatshirt (when exactly did hooded sweatshirts become hoodies anyway?) and I was plenty warm. I treated myself to a $4 bottle of Fanta (love orange soda… but that’s another story from a long time ago in a land far far away) and headed off to my seat. The seat itself reminded me of a movie theater. Heavily cushioned but awkwardly folding. I narrowly missed spilling my Fanta on Kram the 3rd trying to seat myself. I haven’t been keeping up with my Richard Simmon’s exercise videos lately so it was a bit of a squeeze for me but, hey.. that one’s on me. I stayed in seat for the first period and soon found myself wandering. Saw some old friends, ran into some familiar local sports employees and by strategic navigation ended up buying a new hat. Very happy to see the Phantoms carry the 47 brand caps which seem to be the only style that fit my 7 3/4 oddly shaped head.

I did check out the upper level bar and general hang out area. My love for the cheap seats with great views was renewed as I looked down on the ice from above. Some first come first serve seats/tables caught my interest. Soon after heading back downstairs I felt a tingle and headed to a concession stand. Bought a $4 hot dog. I hear ya. I thought it too. Hot dogs are $2 at the Pigs. I have to say though, this was twice the size of a normal dog and had a great flavor to it. Wondering what brand they use… perhaps Kram can research for me. I usually sway away from the bigger hot dogs as there is less crispy surface area to mask the nasty inside. Can’t say that about these as they were tasty. Complimented nicely by the “not-yellow” mustard available. Pleasantly surprised. Not sure if it was dejon or some kind of stone ground or maybe they labeled it incorrectly but it was good. One downer was no fresh chopped onions or relish in clear view. I had no plans for kissing anyone and love to load up a hot dog with some vibrant onions. Not a biggie.. but hey, I like my onions oniony.

Oh yeah, there was a hockey game. Pretty exciting there at the end. Toronto had a 6 to 3 advantage with a minute to go when 2 Phantoms hit the penalty box and they pulled the goalie. Thanks to probably the worst attempt at a slapshot ever attempted, the Phantoms held on and won! Woot!

After the game I spent a few minutes searching for DiPro (my ride home) and ended up in Chickie and Pete’s. Nice crowd in there. Not overwhelming. Fun place. Headed home soon after.

Altogether a fun time. Looks like I may visit again soon.

Oink! Screech! Roll On! Woooowooooowoo! (That’s the sound a Phantom makes)


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Hockey, Basketball AND Football?!!

The Lehigh Valley pro sports scene is rapidly growing since the PPL Arena opened. Kram has been doing a great job keeping us in tune to all the details of hockey and basketball and now we get ready to welcome the Steelhawks arena football team to the new arena!

From the Steelhawks:

Allentown, PA: The Lehigh Valley Steelhawks would like to invite the local media and general public to their 2015 Schedule Release Press Conference on Wednesday, October 22nd. The press conference will include some exciting announcements; the 2015 season schedule, key player signings, Assistant Coaching staff, and tryout information. Announcements will begin at 2:30pm inside the PPL Center, 701 Hamilton St. Allentown. Please enter at the Tim Horton’s Gate of the arena. Following the press conference fans are invited to come mix and mingle with the Steelhawks at Chickie’s and Pete’s inside the arena. There will be food and drink specials available.

Keep checking for the latest news and events from the Steelhawks! For further information please call Lehigh Valley Steelhawks Executive Vice President and General Manager Mike Clark at (610) 282-3100, or visit our website at for the latest Steelhawks news! 2015 Season Ticket packages are now on sale! Reserve your seat now by calling the Steelhawks office at 610-282-3100.

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@SteelhawksPIFL Welcome New PA Opponent! @ErieExplosion

From the Steelhawks:


Steelhawks to Open 2015 Season in Northwest, PA
ERIE, Penn- The Professional Indoor Football League has announced the addition of the Erie Explosion for the 2015 season. Located in Erie, Pennsylvania since 2008, the team under the direction of owner Bill Stafford and head coach Shawn Liotta, have won back to back league championships in 2012-2013 and posted an impressive overall record of 60-20. “Bill and Shawn have done an outstanding job with their football team and we are excited to bring them onboard in the PIFL. It is important for expansion teams to fit within our expansion plan and they must have the ingredients to compete immediately on and off the field. Erie has those ingredients,” stated Director of Expansion Jeff Knight.

The Explosion will play in the recently renovated Erie Insurance Arena that was part of a $42 million renovation project that was completed in September of 2013. The Arena seats 6,500 and has been home to indoor football teams since 2005.

The past three expansion teams in the PIFL have enjoyed immediate success dating back to 2012 when the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks made the playoffs in their first season. Last year the PIFL introduced the Trenton Freedom and the Nashville Venom. Trenton posted the second best regular season record and made the four team playoff format, while Nashville posted a league best record 10-2 and captured a PIFL Championship.

The Explosion will hope to continue that trend as they head into 2015 season kicking off Sunday March 29th against the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks. Explosion Head Coach Shawn Liotta stated, “The PIFL provides our fans with a top quality product each week, tremendous on-field competition, and a platform for our players to advance their professional careers. We look forward to competing for a championship in the top professional indoor football league in the country during the 2015 season.”

The Steelhawks open their 2015 season in Erie on Sunday, March 29th at 2pm. The rest of the team’s schedule will be released at a soon to be announced press conference. The league’s 51 game schedule features eight teams playing 12 games each begins on March 27th and ends with the PIFL Championship game being played the first week in July.

For the latest information the Professional Indoor Football League stay tuned to
Keep checking for the latest news and events from the Steelhawks! For further information please call Lehigh Valley Steelhawks Executive Vice President and General Manager Mike Clark at (610) 282-3100, or visit our website at for the latest Steelhawks news! 2015 Season Ticket packages are now on sale! Reserve your seat now by calling the Steelhawks office at 610-282-3100.

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Noise Nation Superfans Talk @phantomshockey with @KeithGroller

The Noise Nation Superfans got together today at Rileys in Egypt to talk Phantoms Hockey!

With special guest Keith Groller!


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Filed under CherylPursellsPhotos, DiPro's Dish, Kram's Korner - From the Club Level, Noise Nation-Dan, NoiseNation TV, Phantoms Hockey

Varvara Lepchenko Advances to Finals in Korea!

Our favorite Lehigh Valley Tennis Pro Varvara Lepchenko advanced to the final round of the KIA Motors Korea Women’s Open Tennis Championship!

From the Varvara Lepchenko Facebook Fan Page">

From the Varvara Lepchenko Facebook Fan Page”

Lepchenko faced off against Christina McHale in the semi-finals losing the first set 3-6 but coming back and taking the last two sets 6-1 and 7-6(5)!

She moves on to face Karolina Pliskova in the Finals!

Go Varvara!!

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Will Now Call PPL Center Home

Allentown, PA: Beginning the 2015 season, the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks will have a new nest in the PPL Center! In a press conference today, the team announced that they will be making the move from Stabler Arena in Bethlehem to the brand new PPL Center in downtown Allentown.
“The move to the PPL Center enhances our product in so many ways,” stated Steelhawks General Manager Mike Clark. “From the sightlines for the patrons, to the state-of-the-art jumbotron, to the accessibility for all fans being in a downtown area, the PPL Center is going to bring a whole new level of entertainment to the entire Lehigh Valley. We truly appreciate the last four years inside Stabler Arena but we couldn’t be more thrilled to call this our new home.”

The Steelhawks will play all of their home games inside of the state-of-the-art facility that can hold a crowd of 8,500. The arena features an amazing jumbotron, three restaurants (including the famous Chickie’s and Pete’s, Tim Horton’s, and Crust), and great views of the game from anywhere in the building. The new venue will open many doors to allow the Steelhawks’ to bring more entertainment value to all their fans. As a football field, it will be a full 50 yards longs (plus eight yard endzones), and will feature the rounded off endzones that most of the teams in the league have.

“We’re thrilled that the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks have decided to make PPL Center their new home,” said Global Spectrum’s Gunnar Fox, General Manager of PPL Center. “We truly feel that having the Steelhawks as a tenant team will enhance the diverse line-up of events that PPL Center has to offer which now includes arena football.”

The PPL Center ( is a Global-Spectrum managed state-of-the-art multipurpose arena opening this September in downtown Allentown, Pa. The arena will seat more than 10,000 for concerts and more than 8,500 for Steelhawks contests, making it the region’s largest events venue. The amenities-packed PPL Center will host more than 140 events each year, offering something for everyone, including the Phantoms, the AHL affiliate of the NHL Philadelphia Flyers, live concerts, family shows, trade shows, figure skating events, youth sports, high school and collegiate events, Disney on Ice, conferences, graduations and many more events. PPL Center will be the heart of the Lehigh Valley and is currently the main catalyst to the revitalization and growth of downtown Allentown.

Rob and Jim Brooks were also on hand for today’s announcements. “We are excited to welcome the Lehigh Valley Steelhawks to the PPL Center,” said Rob Brooks, owner of the Lehigh Valley Phantoms of the American Hockey League and BDH Development, the master leaseholder of PPL Center. “We look forward to a long-lasting and mutually beneficial partnership between PPL Center and the Steelhawks and are excited to have the team join us during our inaugural season.”

In other news today, in the team’s first 2015 player contract was signed by veteran DL Larry Ford (6’4, 265, West Virginia). He was named to the 2013 All-PIFL 2nd team in a season in which he claimed the team’s single sack record (7.5). He recorded eight tackles, one tackle for a loss, and two sacks in the Steelhawks 2014 campaign which saw him jump up and down from the Cleveland Gladiators franchise in the Arena Football League. Ford brings a defensive leadership and experience to the Steelhawks defensive front line.

Steelhawks Head Coach Chris Thompson shared in the days excitement. “This is a great day for the Steelhawks as we get to not only play in a brand new state of the art arena like the PPL Center, but also raise our 2014 National Conference Championship banner in it on opening night. I can’t wait for our awesome 9th man fan base, Steelhawks Junior Football League (SJFL), and Partners to share in this moment and new home for years to come. We have enjoyed so much success these last 3 years and this is another step forward in providing a great night of family entertainment in the Lehigh Valley. I can’t wait to see what the move to the PPL Center and 2015 season bring for the Steelhawks. All I know, is it is going to be rocking.”

Thank you to the entire Steelhawks Nation for supporting us throughout the years! Stay tuned to the Steelhawks facebook and website for more exciting announcements over the off-season! We are already looking forward to next season.

Keep checking for the latest news and events from the Steelhawks! For further information please call Lehigh Valley Steelhawks Executive Vice President and General Manager Mike Clark at (610) 282-3100, or visit our website at for the latest Steelhawks news! 2015 Season Ticket packages will be on sale soon! Reserve your seat now by calling the Steelhawks office at 610-282-3100.

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@SteelhawksPIFL to Play @PPLCenter !

Our beloved Lehigh Valley Steelhawks announced this morning that they will be playing their 2015 PIFL Arena Football season in the new Allentown Arena!

More details as they come in…


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