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Gwinnett Gladiators, Arena at Gwinnett Center extend contract

The Arena at Gwinnett Center’s main tenant won’t be going anywhere in the near future.

The Gwinnett Center and the Gwinnett Gladiators recently announced the two sides have agreed on a five-year contract extension that will keep the ECHL hockey team in the Duluth venue through the 2018-2019 season.

“We are excited to have Gwinnett Gladiators hockey at the Arena for years to come,” Gwinnett Center assistant general manager Ron Jackson said. “They are a great partner, and we look forward to a Kelly Cup victory this year.”

The Gladiators begin their 12th season on the road Oct. 18, then return for their first homestand Oct. 24-25 at the Arena at Gwinnett Center, the team’s home since it moved to Gwinnett. The hockey team made its debut locally Oct. 24, 2003 with a 5-1 win over the Augusta Lynx.

Gwinnett Center, operated by the Gwinnett Convention and Visitors Bureau, boasts an 80-acre lakefront campus that hosts a variety of events from concerts, performances, meetings, trade shows, conventions, banquets and celebrations. The multi-purpose property includes a 13,000-seat arena, a 702-seat Performing Arts Center, 23 versatile meeting rooms, a 50,000-square foot exhibit hall and a 21,600-square foot grand ballroom.

“The Gladiators organization is pleased to continue our partnership with the GCVB and arena staff as we call the Arena at Gwinnett Center home,” Gladiators majority owner Toby Jeffreys said. “As Atlanta’s one and only professional hockey team, this allows us to continue our relationships and focus on the community as we bring affordable, family fun to Gwinnett and metro Atlanta.”