An Unforgettable Experience at the United Center

by Justin Perry

As a sports writer and fan, I love traveling to different venues to attend different sporting events. I’ve been to places like Chicago, Ill., Huntington, W. Va., Athens, Ohio and South Bend, Ind. I’ve seen everything from hockey to rugby and everything in between.

Last weekend I had the opportunity to travel to Chicago, Ill, to see my first NHL hockey game. My fiance bought tickets to see my favorite hockey team, the Columbus Blue Jackets, as they took on the Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center.

The day started off with the trip up to Chicago. If you are traveling by car, be ready to pay the tolls. Expect to pay around $25 round-trip in just tolls. You also need to be ready for traffic. Let’s be honest, every day in Chicago is bad for traffic, but Saturdays are crazy.

Once we got to Chicago, we went to Giordano’s. If you love deep dish pizza, this is the place to go. For two drinks and a small pizza that feeds two or three people, be ready to pay $30 for the meal and tip.

There are plenty of parking spots at the United Center, but you’ll want to pay for a parking pass online which will be $25. This will get you parked very close to the stadium. Parking opens approximately three and a half hours before each event.

Madhouse is the store that sells gear for both the Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks. In the store you can find interactive booths where you can have your picture taken and “broadcast” one of your favorite moments in Chicago sports. Souvenirs are very expensive at Madhouse; you can find cheaper gear for both teams online.

The United Center is one of the best facilities I’ve ever been to. Even as an opposing fan, everyone was very nice. This was something I did not expect, but made it a very enjoyable experience. The restrooms were very clean, the concessions had a lot of great choices and security was on top of everything. There is not a bad seat in the United Center. No matter where you are, you will be able to enjoy a great event at a great price.

Though Columbus won the game by one; Chicago has some great players that you will want to see this year.  I think both teams have a great opportunity to make their way into the playoffs.