READING, Pa. - The Reading Royals are ready to pump up the celebration for their first-ever trip to the ECHL's Kelly Cup finals.
The team will hold a rally for its fans outside the Sovereign Center on Penn Street from 5:30 until 7:30 p.m. Thursday. The 700 block of Penn Street will be closed to traffic during that time.
Fans will have the chance to meet and greet their favorite Royals and get their photos and autographs, team officials said.
Free parking will be available in the DoubleTree garage on Court Street, between 7th and 8th, starting at 5 p.m.
The first game of the Kelly Cup Championship Finals between the Royals and the Stockton Thunder is scheduled for Saturday at 7:05 p.m. at the Sovereign Center. The 7-game series will continue on the home ice with Game 2 on Sunday at 4:05 p.m.
The teams will then head to the West Coast for the third, fourth and, if necessary, fifth games of the series in Stockton, Calif.
The sixth and seventh games, if necessary, will be in Reading on Tues., May 28 and Wed., May 29 at 7:05 p.m.
Besides both teams making their first trip to the championship finals, they have something else in common. Both of their home arenas -- the Sovereign Center and the Stockton Arena -- are managed by SMG.
"We are thrilled to be making our Kelly Cup Championship debut, and proud to have the series hosted in two SMG buildings," said Zane Collings, SMG regional general manager. "Not only is it an accomplishment for both teams to come this
far, but a point of pride for SMG to maintain such high level operations in
accommodating this extended season."
The Royals and Thunder have faced each other only three times in their respective histories. The Royals traveled to Stockton in the Thunder's inaugural season of 2005-06 and won each of three consecutive games.
The Royals are the top seed in the Eastern Conference; the Thunder are the fourth seed in the Western Conference.
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