New Red Wings arena scores first two major sponsors
Meijer and Saint Joseph Mercy Health System are the first major sponsors of the Detroit Red Wings’ future home.
The two Michigan entities have signed on to “the highest level of commitment” for multiple years at the new venue, being built now, according to a press release sent out Thursday by Olympia Entertainment, a branch of the Wings’ owners. Financial terms of the deals were not disclosed.
The selection of the two firm reflects the Wings owners’ commitment to spotlight local and state companies at the Detroit venue, Olympia officials said Thursday.
“Meijer and Saint Joseph Mercy Health System will have maximum visibility throughout the Detroit Events Center,” according to the press release. The two will be “Landmark” partners, which means “complete ... integration” with the Wings and Olympia Entertainment. Olympia Entertainment manages downtown’s Fox Theatre, Comerica Park, City Theatre and Joe Louis Arena, the current home of the Wings that is slated to be demolished.
The naming rights for the new Wings venue hasn’t been decided. “We just aren’t there yet at all with a decision on the naming rights,” said Olympia Entertainment spokeswoman Jennifer Arapoff.
As part of the sponsorship deal, Meijer is working on concepts for an interactive kids’ area, free hockey clinics throughout the summer and Red Wings player appearances. Saint Joseph will have a “Healthy Hockeytown” platform, which includes multiple health-oriented events such as 5K runs and yoga classes. It will also offer a Healthy Choice program currently at Joe Louis Arena, which offers fans more healthy food options at the venue.
“After opening two Meijer stores in the city recently, we see this as another excellent way to support Detroit,” said Cathy Cooper, senior director of community partnerships and giving for Meijer. Meijer is a Grand Rapids-based retailer that operates 223 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin.
Saint Joseph is one of the nation’s top health care service providers, spanning seven counties across southeast Michigan. It is a member of Trinity Health, the third largest Catholic health care system in the country.
“Our sponsorship is an exciting way to bring our message of health and wellness to visitors to the Detroit Events Center, and engage people out in the community where they live, work and play,” said Rob Casalou, regional president and CEO, Saint Joseph Mercy Health System
The $627 million venue is being built just north of downtown Detroit along Woodward. The arena is expected to be an economic catalyst that will transform 45 blocks around the venue with hundreds of new residents, dozens of new stores, offices and revamped public spaces. That plan is called District Detroit.
Earlier this year, Wayne State University announced it would build a new business school next to the new arena.
“We are thrilled to have Meijer and Saint Joseph Mercy Health System as our first official, long-term partners,” said Tom Wilson, president and CEO of Olympia Entertainment. “Both companies are focused on bringing unique experiences to fans and visitors, and are names we are very proud to have associated with the new Detroit Events Center.”