SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – It was a special day out on the ice for the Springfield Thunderbirds Wednesday morning, as Springfield Public School students filled the MassMutual Center to cheer them on.

Wednesday’s game was definitely one of the loudest games of the season, as students from various Springfield public schools gathered at the MassMutual Center for a fun and educational game-day experience. The Springfield Thunderbirds’ School Game Day returned after a pandemic hiatus, blending the classroom and hockey rink together. Students cheering on the T-birds as they faced off against the Syracuse Crunch.

Kashmere, a student in eighth grade, said “I’m really thankful for actually coming here, it’s my first time.”

The School Day Game offers both an educational and a fun experience for the kids at the MassMutual Center. Even if they need to work on their shot, this day is meant to show students that there are career options in sports beyond being a player.

Nathan Costa, the Thunderbirds President said, “You know, I think a lot of times, kids think that the only way to get into the pro-sports industry is to be on the ice or be on the field and we just wanted to open their eyes to opportunities on our side. You know, you can work on the business side you can have a career in pro-sports without being an athlete.”

A sports symposium held before the 10:35 a.m. puck drop allowed students to hear from industry professionals. All throughout the game, students also get the opportunity to snap some photos, get some snacks, and work on their shots. More than 2,000 tickets were provided to students across dozens of districts…providing an unforgettable experience for so many.