KeyBank Center is a large indoor arena in Buffalo City, New York State, with a huge seating capacity of 19,070 for its hockey games. The multipurpose indoor area was initially known as Marine Midland Arena. After that, it was known as HSBC Arena and First Niagara Center, finally renaming it to KeyBank Center.
The arena is a favorite spot for hockey lovers as it is home to the professional ice hockey team, Buffalo Sabres.
KeyBank Center replaced the Buffalo Sabres’ former home, Buffalo Memorial Auditorium, where they played from 1970 to 1996. Besides Buffalo Sabres, KeyBank Center is also home to the Buffalo Bandits National Lacrosse League team.
KeyBank Center was originally known as Crossroads Arena when it opened in September 1996. It replaced the former home of Buffalo Sabres, Buffalo Memorial Auditorium, but when a large JumboTron fell to the ice minutes after a few players ended their practice, the game between Buffalo Sabres and Boston Bruins was postponed, and the eight-sided scoreboard was later replaced in that season.
After the 1998-1999 hockey season, the arena underwent many updates. In 2003, the matrix board was replaced with a LED ribbon, and the original glass boards were removed and replaced with clear plastic stanchions.
In 2008, two Sabres illuminated logos were installed on the pavilion’s upper levels. In 2011, significant renovations, including installing new locker rooms, were carried out.
The Crossroads Arena took on the blue and gold color scheme representing Buffalo Sabres, and HDTVs replaced the original televisions. Signage was upgraded wherever required. The ice rink was subjected to the most expensive renovations, as a new cooling tower and dehumidifier system were installed, improving the game’s ice quality.
The latest updates occurred in 2016 when the arena was renamed from the First Niagara Center to KeyBank Center. Due to this change, new signage was installed on the exterior, and a new LED lighting system ensured better lighting and energy consumption in the arena.
Events at KeyBank Center
KeyBank Center hosts plenty of special events, including concerts featuring great artists, in addition to hosting NHL games. The multipurpose arena is a fantastic venue that held concerts in the past from famous musicians like Justin Bieber, Rage Against the Machine, Eric Church, and the Weeknd. Besides that, many festivals and comedy shows are hosted in the arena.
1. Michael Buble
The Grammy-winning Canadian singer performs at the KeyBank Center, providing a dynamic concert for the visitors and entertaining the audience with his exceptional talent and energy.
2. Sabres vs. Senators
The two professional National Hockey Teams play against each other at the KeyBank Center on October 13, 2022.
3. Live Tour: Jurassic World
The exhilarating family entertainment brings the wonderful experience of Jurassic World, which several generations of fans love. Customers purchase advance tickets to get the best seats and enjoy this wild entertainment, combined with practical scenery that transforms the KeyBank Center arena into the jungles of Isla Nublar.
4. Kevin Hart: Reality Check Tour
The Emmy-nominated Kevin Hart travels across North America on tour for his new comedy show “Reality Check.”
5. An Evening with David Jeremiah
David Jeremiah, New York Times bestselling author, comes to New York for his new teaching series, and the event at KeyBank Center includes a night of teachings and worship by the Bible teacher from his series, The World of the End. Admission to the event is free, and visitors will have an opportunity to gather merchandise and exclusive resources.
Policies and Other Facilities at KeyBank Center
Large bags or backpacks are prohibited inside the arena during NCAA events. Clutches or small bags no larger than 6 * 1.5″ will also be inspected.
The KeyBank Center has installed twelve ticket windows for the convenience of its guests, and children under the age of 3 are allowed without a ticket into a Sabres or Bandits game.
Video equipment is not allowed on game days, and only still cameras having 4 inches lenses are permitted.
During the Sabres vs. Bandits games, flash photography is permitted, and guests can bring digital cameras with long lenses as long as they do not block aisles or other patrons’ views.
Other main events besides the Sabres/Bandits games do not allow cameras, and those brought inside must not have a detachable lens.
A variety of unique and traditional food is offered for the guest’s enjoyment inside the arena, which includes in-seat food service and beverages available to Club seat patrons.
The concession stands are accessible, and assistants are available at every concession stand to ensure that guests with visual impairments are adequately assisted. All concession stands do not accept cash to ensure the maximum safety of the staff and guests.
KeyBank Center doesn’t allow outside food and drinks, but exceptions are made if the beverage or food is for medical purposes.
Door Opening Times
For Buffalo Sabres regular season games, the soft open 90 minutes prior to puck drop ensure that guests have access to 100-level concessions. An hour before puck drop, full open allows the guests access to the seating areas.
Buffalo Bandits’ regular season games have a full open an hour before the game starts.
Concerts and other social events ensure a full open 1 hour before the show time.
Elevators and Emergency Exits
KeyBank Center offers elevator services for suite holders and those patrons having disabilities. This elevator stops at all 100 levels, and the arena representatives are always available to guide and assist guests in locating the elevators.
Emergency exits are prominently marked in red and located throughout KeyBank Center. The representatives are instructed to ensure proper evacuation of premises when needed, which is why all guests are directed to follow their orders.
First Aid and Weapons Policy
KeyBank Center representatives escort guests who need first aid to the First Aid Room. Firearms or weapons are strictly prohibited inside KeyBank Center or its surrounding properties.
KeyBank Center is a well-managed and incredible location to experience different sports events, concerts, and other special events. Besides the thrilling events, KeyBank Center also offers delicious food and drinks associated with the traditional style through plenty of restaurants that never disappoint their customers in terms of flavor.