Where the Hornets sharpen their stingers. Braemar Arena is proud of the addition of the "Hornets Nest." The entire facility is state of the art and truly reflects the Edina community. The Boys High School team moved in on Dec. 14, 2012, to prepare for the Holiday Classic tournament that was held at Braemar Arena. The Girls High School team moved in one week later, just in time to prepare for their Abra Holiday tournament that was also held at Braemar Arena. The new locker rooms alone were worth the 35-year wait!
Velocity Hockey Center
Velocity Hockey Center opened Feb. 4, 2013, and is a state-of the-art off-ice training facility. The addition of Velocity significantly impacts the arena revenues during the off season. Staff and patrons are thrilled to develop a relationship with Velocity Hockey Center.
The new addition incorporated space for an expansion location of the local retail sporting goods store, General Sports. Their professional staff can fit players with the proper sports equipment and outfit a team with uniforms or spirit wear apparel. Skate sharpening is also available. General Sports is located at the North end of the arena and is accessible via the West Arena or through its main doors on the west side of the building complex.
In July 2012, the Edina City Council approved the construction of the "Hornets Nest" at Braemar Arena. The two-story expansion, initiated by a group of dedicated Edina Hornet hockey fans, included new locker rooms and associated space for the Edina High School boys and girls hockey teams. The Hornets Nest also includes a General Sports retail store and Velocity dryland training facility.
Private donations made the project possible. Approval of the $3 million project was contingent on the "Drive for the Hive" advocates raising nearly $800,000 in private contributions. Edina Public Schools covers expenses associated with operating the locker rooms and the Edina Hockey Association and Braemar-City of Lakes Figure Skating Club members pay a $20 annual surcharge for 20 years. Those sources, along with lease revenue for the training facility and retail area, are meant to cover the costs of the project.
The initial goal of the project was to give the storied Edina Hornet hockey teams home locker rooms comparable to those in neighboring communities. Existing locker rooms were decades old and had become tired, inefficient and unbecoming to high school teams. Hornet fans knew neither the school district nor the City would be able to pay for new locker rooms. In 2010, the group of fans introduced the concept of a public-private partnership that would not only cover the costs of the bonds to the City, but also provided a dryland training facility that will benefit the entire Edina skating community. A sporting goods retail space was also envisioned to serve the needs of baseball, hockey, figure skating, soccer, lacrosse and football players who frequently visit the Braemar Arena area.