Photos by Paul Baker, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.86
Amica Mutual Pavilion 1 LaSalle Sq Providence, RI 02903
Year Opened: 1972
After carrying the name “Dunkin’ Donuts Center” for 21 years, Providence’s downtown arena entered into a new naming rights agreement with Lincoln, Rhode Island-based Amica Mutual Insurance company. The deal, signed for ten years, is worth $900,000 per year. The Amica Mutual Pavilion, which opened in 1972 as the Providence Civic Center, was built to house the Providence College basketball team and the Providence Reds of the American Hockey League.
The Providence Bruins are the American Hockey League affiliate of the nearby Boston Bruins. The P-Bruins moved to the Ocean State from Portland, Maine in 1992 and currently enjoy the longest uninterrupted affiliation in the AHL, playing their 31st season in 2022-23. The team has won one Calder Cup championship during their time in Providence, in 1999.
Providence is one of minor league hockey’s legendary cities, with a history that predates the AHL. The Reds called Providence home from 1926 to 1977. The Reds won four Calder Cups and three Fontaine Cups as champions of the Canadian-American Hockey League.
Food & Beverage 3
The concessions at Amica Mutual Pavilion don’t stray far from your typical arena fare. Hot dogs, burgers, sausage sandwiches, chicken nuggets, and pizzas comprise the bulk of the menu. The only items that can be considered out of the ordinary are meatball subs and pulled pork sandwiches. These items can hardly be considered popular at The AMP. A large variety of snacks are available, including the most popular item here, fried dough. Coca-Cola products are featured at The AMP.
Fans looking for an adult beverage while at a P-Bruins game will have plenty of choices. While the craft beer craze hasn’t hit The AMP yet, there are plenty of national brands to choose from. Budweiser, Bud Light, Corona, Miller Lite, and Narragansett make up the choices. In addition, wine and mixed drinks, including Stoli Blueberry and Lemonade, Bacardi and Pepsi, and Hornitos Margaritas, are served straight from the tap.
The AMP is a pretty entertaining place to be on weekend nights. The affiliation with the nearby Boston Bruins ensures that the fans who visit downtown Providence are enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the team on the ice.
The team has finally seemed to have figured out how best to use the large new video board installed several years ago. Videos, replays, and crowd shots grab fans’ attention during play stoppages. Contests and giveaways during stoppages get the younger fans involved, filling the arena with noise at the most random times. A P-Bruins game is a really fun place to be, especially if you’re ten.
The Amica Mutual Pavilion is located in downtown Providence, the capital and largest city in Rhode Island. It is within walking distance of numerous attractions, shops, bars, and restaurants. Providence has a reputation as one of the best small cities in the nation for foodies, and the downtown area has no shortage of choices for visiting fans.
A short walk from The AMP is Federal Hill, Providence’s version of Little Italy, an area lined with dozens of nationally renowned restaurants. It’s a popular destination for visitors, particularly if visiting in the spring. If the walk to Federal Hill is too much for you, simply cross the street to Trinity Brewhouse, one of the area’s original brewpubs. Their menu of craft beers is hard to beat.
Entertainment options in the area include the Trinity Repertory Company, the Providence Performing Arts Center, and historic sites such as the Arcade (the nation’s oldest indoor shopping center) and the State House. If visiting during the warmer months, be sure to experience Waterfires, where cauldrons lining the Providence, Woonasquatucket, and Mosshasuck Rivers are lit on fire as part of an outdoor festival on several weekends every year.
Providence received the equivalent of the New England hockey “Golden Ticket” when the incredibly popular Boston Bruins placed their top farm team here in 1992. Since then, the P-Bruins have ranked in the top 5 in terms of attendance in the American Hockey League in almost every one of their 30 seasons. During the 2021-22 season, the P-Bruins once again ranked number five in the AHL attendance listings, averaging almost 7,000 fans per game.
Rhode Island is one of the most hockey-crazed parts of the country, with a rabid fanbase and strong youth programs in all parts of the state. This is reflected in the typical P-Bruins crowd, which is a mix of long-time diehards, casual fans, families, and groups. The AMP is full of noise and energy throughout the season.
The Amica Mutual Pavilion is located in downtown Providence, easily accessed via Interstate 95. Be warned that traffic in and around Providence can be quite heavy if visiting on a weekday, so prepare to take some extra time to arrive.
There is ample parking in the many surface lots and garages around the Amica Mutual Pavilion. Downtown Providence can be a busy place, particularly around the holidays. At this time of year, hockey fans compete for space with holiday shopping at the nearby Providence Place Mall and shows at Trinity Repertory Company, and Providence Performing Arts Center.
Fans utilizing public transportation will be pleased to know that both Kennedy Plaza, the hub of the local RIPTA bus service, and Union Station, the local Amtrak stop, are located a short walk from the Amica Mutual Pavilion.
The entire facility received a makeover in 2008, which still holds up well today. There is a single concourse that circles the playing surface. Fans will enter the seating bowl halfway up. 100 seats are below 200 seats above. All seats are individual folding stadium seats with excellent views of the ice. Expect lines to form in the food court and restrooms between periods, so plan your trips accordingly.
Return on Investment 3
Tickets to P-Bruins games start at $37.75 for lower bowl seats, with upper-level seats priced between $20-$33.75. The P-Bruins run specials that will help defray the cost of tickets, with $10 off and Me Plus Three packages offered for practically every game on the schedule.
As you may expect, parking in the downtown area around The AMP will incur another charge. Parking in the lots and garages around the arena costs between $10-25 dollars, depending on location and the night of the event. If you don’t mind a little walk, you can park at the Providence Place Mall and get your parking validated for just $5. Enclosed walkways bring you from the mall to the AMP. There is plenty of free parking in the neighborhood for those who want to search a little bit.
Concessions, while a little on the high side, are generally in line with other venues in the area. Local fans comparing a P-Bruins game to the big boys in Boston will undoubtedly enjoy the cheaper prices here.
Providence is an original AHL city, with a professional hockey history that predates the league. Hanging from the rafters of The AMP are banners commemorating championships won by the Providence Bruins and their predecessor, the Providence Reds. Located in the lobby are plaques honoring local soldiers, the Providence Bruins 1999 Calder Cup championship team, and Providence player of the century Zellio Toppazzini. A banner honoring former P-Bruin Colby Cave hangs alongside the championship banners.
Be sure to seek out the historical touches that abound around the arena, in particular the interactive kiosks on the far side of the concourse that commemorate the long history of the Providence Reds. The Reds have their historic society that continues to operate today. In addition, the Rhode Island Hockey Hall of Fame has added an interactive kiosk to the display.
Fans looking to pick up some Providence or Boston Bruins gear will enjoy the well-stocked Pro Shop located at The AMP. In addition, there is a kiosk with a smaller selection of swag on the concourse.
Providence and the Amica Mutual Pavilion are often mentioned among the top American Hockey League travel destinations. The combination of a modern arena, frenzied fan support, and a fantastic downtown area makes The AMP a first-rate destination. With the number and quality of hockey venues in and around Rhode Island, this is a Stadium Journey worth taking by any hockey fan.