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Fairgrounds rink gets use days before AHL outdoor game

After a few final touches from the Zamboni, a few youth teams were able to give Central New York's newest hockey rink a try.

Some hockey fans also got a preview of what the how the wind feels coming around the grandstands. One fan said she was planning to bring mittens, a hat, earmuffs, wool socks and big blanket to Saturday's Mirabito Outdoor Classic at the State Fairgrounds.

On Thursday the Crunch said more than 17,000 tickets had been sold for the outdoor game and that they were working to find space for anyone else who wanted to attend.

As far as I know they've added some standing room only," said Jim Hartnett who is the Project manager for the Syracuse Crunch. "We're running out of space quickly."

Many fans were looking forward to being part of Syracuse hockey history but also hoped the large crowd would help keep them warm. "At least there will be some body heat going on in there but I'm hoping it's not snowing," said Brianna McClean as she looked out over the bleachers.

The Crunch are also hoping it doesn't snow. The ice is all set but the ice maintenance team is watching the skies closely.

"The only concern is precipitation and I just have to do a couple tricks and make a couple things happen," said Jim Hartnett. "We very well may have to use a second Zamboni to deal with it but we've got the game plan all set."

The Crunch's project manager says fans should make sure they're wearing winter boots or very warm shoes. Individual tickets are still on sale for $30 to $40.

Click here for more information on the game, including how you can buy a ticket.

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