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MIAMA Member Spotlight: Craig Flor – University of Minnesota Mariucci and Ridder Arena’s

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Name:   Craig Flor    

Organization Name:  University of Minnesota Mariucci and Ridder Arena’s

Address: 1901 4th Street S.E.

City: Minneapolis  State: MN  Zip: 55455

Phone #:  612-625-8365



Tell us how you got into the industry? 

Finishing my Park, Recreation, and Leisure studies degree at the U of M,  I needed an internship and it worked out to be the Athletic Facilities intern for Gopher Men’s hockey games and Gopher Men’s Basketball Games during the 1994-1995 season.  I was then asked to apply for the Assistant facility manager position and began my career January 1997. 


How many years have you been in the ice arena industry? 



What is the best part about working in an ice arena? 

I like seeing all the different events we have done in addition to the Gopher hockey games.  My greatest pleasure is during events or after the puck drops you look around and see the crowd of fans, and the players having a great time and know I helped in making this event with this type of atmosphere happen. 


Using one word, name one thing you love about working at a rink? 



Nobody’s perfect in this industry. Tell us your worst experience at a rink so far?

Assisting with a USFSA bid for a National Synchronized Skating event.  Had to displace Gopher Men’s hockey game vs. Wisconsin to the Target Center whom had not had a hockey event in 10 years.  Our staff was amazing but it was one of the toughest week and a half to get through. We were all stretched a bit thin assisting with the National Synchronized skating event at Mariucci Arena, hosting the WCHA Women’s Final Face off at Rider Arena, and Assisting the Target Center with their first Hockey event in 10 years, then to Change Mariucci Arena back to a Hockey rink for a Gopher Men’s hockey game on Sunday


What are the first three things you do when you get to the rink each day?

Check notes from the evening before, Check and answer e-mails, and walk facility. 


How do you feel ongoing professional development is helping you and your career?

Not growing up a Rink rat or being around ice arenas, I owe a ton to MIAMA and the professional development it fosters to learn from others and share with others successes and failures.  Also the Educational opportunities that MIAMA has offered at the Fall conferences has been great to reinforce or enhance what we are doing in our operation. 


How would you explain to the average hockey parent how the ice resurfacer works to resurface the ice?

An Ice resurfacer does 3 things 1. It shaves the ice.  2. It washes the ice and 3. Lays water to make ice.  What that driver does after a mite skate is way different than how he drives after a Gopher Men’s Hockey Practice. 


Who would you like to acknowledge for helping (mentoring) you along the way? 

Dan Bourgeios and Joe Meierhofer (Go Huskies!) have been great to get feedback and ideas from. 


What is the best tip you have learned from any of the classes offered through MIAMA? 

Documentation of everything will prove to be your saving grace someday somehow. 


Jon Balvance

MIAMA Communications Director

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