Your Kalamazoo Wings!
Your Kalamazoo Wings! The First 45 Years
September 27, 2018 - March 31, 2019
A new exhibit at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum will inspire admiration for Kalamazoo’s oldest professional sports team. The exhibit was created so that fans could recall some of the league’s most memorable moments and so that those who are still unfamiliar with the team have a chance to learn about its history. The Kalamazoo Wings are celebrating their 45th year in the community.
Along with learning more about the team’s formation, the construction of the Wings Event Center, and early championship titles, visitors will also see how the culture of the game and the fan base has evolved. Did you know the Kalamazoo Wings invented the practice of turning the ice different colors for special events? The very first colored ice game was started in 1982. The K-Wings are best known for their tradition of celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with their Green Ice Game, beginning on March 17, 1982.
Fans will be able to relive some of the K-Wings' most memorable moments, while others will learn about the K-Wings’ most defining moments. These include the Turner Cup Championship in 1979 and 1980, the Colonial Cup Championship, league changes, team name changes, team color changes, the introduction and continuation of the team’s mascot, Slapshot (aka Slappy), and player and coaching staff changes.
Those unfamiliar with hockey will learn the rules and terms of the game, while hockey fans can review these materials in a new setting. The exhibit also exclusively acknowledges its strong fan base, including fan memorabilia. When the K-Wings played their first-ever game in Kalamazoo at their new Stadium on October 30, 1974, they played in front of 4,157 fans.