DCU Center – Worcester Railers
Riding the Rails
The DCU Center in Worcester, Massachusetts opened in 1982 and was home to AHL hockey on and off until 2015 when the Worcester Sharks moved to San Jose. After the move it left a void in one of the better hockey markets in New England. That void was filled by the Worcester Railers of the ECHL. The ownership seems to have invigorated the fans and created a really fun atmosphere to watch a game. Hopefully the team is successful because Worcester has a rich history with the sport of hockey and the fans are quite knowledgeable about the sport.
Food & Beverage 4
There is a good variety of food and drink options at the DCU Center. You can find the classic stadium fare such as popcorn, pretzels, hot dogs, and candy. There are many other unique options as well though. One of my favorite stands in the arena is a stand that sells specialty nachos. They have your typical nachos but also have Mac & Cheese nachos as well as buffalo bleu.
There are two large lounge areas at both sides of the arena that have an extensive variety of liquor, beer, and wine. They offer a nice view of the game as well as plentiful drink options. The prices are pretty typical for minor league hockey.
This is the first year for the Worcester Railers but there already seems to be a good amount of passion with the fan base. The fans get into the game and seem to really be embracing the new ECHL team. The fans were very knowledgeable about the sport of hockey and seemed to know their stuff. Opposing fans will have no problems when visiting the DCU Center. The fans were respectful to everyone no matter what their allegiance.
The Worcester Railers have done a solid job to create a fun hockey environment for the fans at the DCU Center. The atmosphere is similar to what you would expect at most minor league sporting events. There is plenty of music, giveaways, and fun events throughout the night. One of the cool things they have is a small blimp that circles the arena and drops coupons for restaurants in the area. There are many local businesses and restaurants that make their presence known around the arena as well.
The DCU Center is very easy to get to. It is right off of I-290. Once you get off of the highway there is a parking garage right next to the arena that charges $10 to park. This is very convenient especially in the frigid winter months in Massachusetts. Once inside the arena, space gets a bit tight. When there is a good sized crowd it can be hard to navigate the concourse. The DCU Center could definitely use more space in both the bathrooms and the concourse. The upper area of seating is blocked off for Worcester Railers games so every seat is in the lower level of the arena and has a great view of the action.
Worcester is a bit of a weird city. There are some parts that are great to see and filled with college students and restaurants. There are other parts that you would be wise to avoid. The DCU Center is located in a fairly good area of the city. It is right next to St. Vincent’s hospital as well as several hotels. Additionally, if you are looking for a bite before the game there are plenty of options. You can find pizza, Mexican, and Italian restaurants all within walking distance of the arena.
Return on Investment 3
Tickets for a Worcester Railers game range from $15 for a general admission ticket to $30 for a seat right next to the glass. Since the view is pretty good from everywhere the $15 ticket will do you just fine. Parking is $10 if you park in the garage adjacent to the arena, and the food is not very expensive. Prices are what you would expect at a minor league sporting event. All in all the value at a Railers game is solid but not spectacular.
The DCU Center gets one extra star for bringing hockey back to the city of Worcester which has a long history with the sport. It lost its AHL team to the California expansion.
It’s great that hockey is back in the city of Worcester. It seems like the team has gotten the word out and pumped up the excitement level for this season. You can sense the passion and knowledge that the fans possess. The DCU Center isn’t the best place to watch a game but it isn’t too expensive and you get to see some pretty good hockey. If you find yourself in the Worcester area you should check out the Worcester Railers at the DCU Center.
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Hilton Garden Inn Worcester
35 Major Taylor Blvd,
Worcester, MA 01608
Holiday Inn Express
110 Summer St,
Worcester, MA 01608
Latest Crowd Reviews
The Railers are the third pro hockey team to call the DCU Center home. Worcester was a victim of the AHL&#039s western movement, and now host an ECHL team. With teams in Manchester and Portland (in 18-19), there&#039s a renewal of old AHL rivalries. Crowds so far have surpassed what the IceCats and Sharks had, and early reports are that this ownership is really in touch with the fans and local community. Food options are solid here, but prices are much too pricey for this level of hockey. The DCU Center was built in the 80&#039s when concert tours began skipping the old Boston Garden. It&#039s not a great venue for hockey, as many seats face the ice at odd angles. It can also be tough to navigate the concourses when there&#039s a big crowd, but it&#039s a solid place to catch a game.