WORCESTER BUSINESS JOURNAL – Due to hockey’s rising popularity and the possibility of adding more winter sports like curling and speed skating, the New England Sports Center in Marlborough will open two new ice rinks by August, making it eight full-size rinks at the facility.
The center hosts ice hockey tournaments throughout the year, helping to fuel Marlborough’s hotel industry, said to be the largest concentration of hotels in Massachusetts outside Boston.
Already, more than 1 million people visit each year, and Sports Center General Manager Wes Tuttle said the facility expects that number to grow by 20 to 30 percent after the expansion is complete.
“The sport is growing,” he said of hockey’s popularity. “Boys, girls, adults.”
Other sports are also contributing to the facility’s growth. The Sports Center will host a curling club — for a sport most often seen during the Winter Olympics — and is in talks with people who may bring speed skating, Puttle said.
This article originally appeared here.