FAIRBANKS-Last evening the Nanook hockey team opened their new locker room to the public. Some players and coaches showed fans around the new facilities. I got a walkthrough and it was something to see.
The locker room renovations took over six months to complete. The stateof Alaska appropriated four million dollars to the construction of the new locker rooms. The team and the Nanook Face Off Club also raised one hundred thousand dollars towards the project as well.
It's loaded with lots of space, a nice UAF emblem in the center and ceiling of the locker room, player lounge area, new coaches offices, murals of hockey alums and awards and honors posted on the main hallway of the locker room area. The players, coaches, and fans have said it's a NHL level locker room.
Other local hockey teams will have access to these new facilities as well when they compete in the Carlson. Fans were impressed and players feel an elevated sense of pride and excitement for their new locker room.
"It's a beautiful facility," Libby Eddy said. "So nice to see. If you knew what they had before to see what they have now is just gorgeous."
"I think it's really going to help boost the morale and just give them inspiration to perform better than they have in the past. Which is not that bad," Steve said with a chuckle.
Sophomore center Matthew Friese remembers the old locker room and this new facility is having its affect on the team.
"It's a lot different than last year's locker room and we just feel a lot more professional I guess. It really creates a bit of a bond between guys too because everyone's excited and then we take that excitement out on the ice and look forward to a good year," Friese said.