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11/18/2010 10:38 AM -

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – “Amway Section A,” the $1.2 million expansion of Van Andel Arena’s northwest concourse, will be dedicated and opened to the public prior to the game this Saturday, Nov. 20 between the Grand Rapids Griffins and Lake Erie Monsters at 7 p.m.

Following four months of construction, final touches are being made to this 3,500-square-foot addition, which was designed by Rossetti Architects, the arena’s original architects, and built by general contractor Rockford Construction and other local firms. Intended to help alleviate congestion during large arena events, Amway Section A will feature a full bar, concession-style food service and three 42” flat screen TVs.

“Teaming up with the Griffins to increase the visibility of the Amway name was the perfect opportunity for us,” said David Madiol, manager at Amway. “Investing in one of the area’s top destinations and hockey teams allows us to show our support to the community in which we've done business in for more than 50 years.”

A brief ribbon-cutting ceremony for Amway Section A will be held at 6:15 p.m. Saturday, 15 minutes after doors open. Madiol, Griffins president & CEO Dan DeVos, and SMG’s regional general manager for Van Andel Arena, Rich MacKeigan, will be among the dignitaries on hand to dedicate the addition and welcome its first patrons. The first 500 fans to visit Amway Section A will receive a free t-shirt, while 100 more shirts will be tossed to the crowd during the Griffins game.

“With the full support of the Grand Rapids-Kent County Convention/Arena Authority, we continually strive to make improvements that benefit our patrons,” said MacKeigan. “The expansion of the concourse will provide a more convenient and comfortable walkway for patrons and an additional area for concessions, while maintaining the look and feel of the facility’s original design.”

MursakAmway300.jpgThe naming rights for the concourse expansion are one element in a three-year sponsorship agreement between the Griffins and Amway, which also includes the placement of an Amway patch on the Griffins’ home and road jerseys and ad spots during the Griffins’ radio broadcasts on ESPN 96.1 FM.

“We have pursued Amway in the past with different sponsorship elements, but this year we really felt we had a package that perfectly met their corporate objectives,” said Tim Gortsema, the Griffins’ senior vice president of business operations. “The jersey patch is premium inventory that gives them broadness of reach in all the American Hockey League markets we visit, and having the Amway name connected to the home of the Griffins is a great match. I could not envision any other sponsor for this expansion.”

Amway is extremely active in sports sponsorships. They hold the naming rights of the Amway Center in Orlando, which is home to the NBA’s Orlando Magic, and are the presenting sponsor of Major League Soccer’s San Jose Earthquakes. Most recently, Amway’s North American affiliate announced they hold exclusive rights to placing their logo on the official Detroit Red Wings practice jersey as well as dasher board signage at Joe Louis Arena.

About Amway
Amway is one of the world’s largest direct selling businesses. Founded in 1959 and headquartered in Ada, Michigan, USA, Amway offers consumer products and business opportunities in more than 80 countries and territories worldwide. The company also provides product development, manufacturing and logistics services through its Access Business Group and Alticor Corporate Enterprises divisions. In its most recent fiscal year, the Amway family of companies reported annual sales of $8.4 billion. For more information, please contact Amway’s media relations staff at (616) 787-7565, or via e-mail at

About the Griffins
The Grand Rapids Griffins are celebrating their 15th season as West Michigan's premier sports team. The primary affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings and a proud member of the American Hockey League, the Griffins make their home at Van Andel Arena in downtown Grand Rapids. Since their 1996 inception, the Griffins have sent 111 players on to the National Hockey League while helping to generate more than $4 million for charitable organizations and causes throughout our area.

About Van Andel Arena
Van Andel Arena - the $75 million crown jewel of Michigan's second largest and fastest-growing market - has thrust Grand Rapids into the forefront of the entertainment industry. The 12,000-plus capacity Van Andel Arena is managed by SMG, the leading private management company for public assembly facilities worldwide. The Arena was named in recognition of the largest benefactor, Jay and Betty Van Andel. Van Andel Arena and Grand Rapids offer the perfect combination of cosmopolitan flair and Midwestern hospitality to make any event a success. Since marking its grand entrance on October 8, 1996, Van Andel Arena has attracted the biggest names in family shows, concerts and sporting events.

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