Bloomington Ice Garden makes top 4 in Kraft Hockeyville contest

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Photo courtesy of the City of Bloomington. 

The Bloomington Ice Garden (BIG) is one of four finalists in the Kraft Hockeyville USA 2017 national contest and is in the running to win $150,000 in rink improvements and to host a NHL preseason game next season.

BIG was initially selected as one of 10 finalists from thousands of hockey rinks around the country. The ice arena earned enough votes to advance to the second round and is now competing  against Bloomington, Illinois to advance to the third and final round of the competition.

Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday. You can cast your vote here

BIG is arguably one of the most well-known community ice rinks in Minnesota. It opened in 1970 and was used as a practice space by the 1980 “Miracle on Ice” Olympic team.

Making it to the second round of the contest has already guaranteed BIG at least $25,000 in rink improvements.

The grand prize winning receives $150,000 and the runner-up will receive $75,000 toward arena upgrades.

“The City of Bloomington is interested in seeing some improvements made to BIG,” Bloomington Amateur Hockey Association President Lenny Klevan Schmitz said in a statement. "The Kraft Hockeyville contest is a way to fund some of the much-needed upgrades to the facility." 

The grand prize winner will also get to host a 2017-’18 NHL preseason game.