New Blackhawks community training center unveiled

CHICAGO — On the same day the NHL draft begins in Chicago,  the Blackhawks showed off the team's new community training facility.

Located just two blocks south of the United Center, the building will have training rinks for both the team and the community.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, the National Hockey League commissioner, and top brass with the Chicago Blackhawks got a behind-the scenes preview of the still-unfolding $65 million Blackhawks practice facility.

Blackhawks Chairman Rocky Wirtz described the vision, with star Winger Patrick Kane showing people the new digs complete with two rinks one for the pros the other for the community and budding young hockey players.

Present were also some of the 27th ward kids who will benefit participating in today's Fan Fest outside the United Center. Grass Roots hockey programs like Hockey on Your Block already has hundreds of 27th Ward kids ready to hit the ice.

The team is also spending $3 million on hockey equipment to help families who can't afford it.

The training center is scheduled to open in mid-December. It will operate 24 hours a day.