Dow Event Center
|Dow Event Center|
|Former names||The Saginaw County Event Center
Saginaw Civic Center
|Location||303 Johnson Street
Saginaw, MI 48607-1213
|Construction cost||$17 million (renovation)
($21.2 million in 2013 dollars)
|Architect||Wigen, Tincknell, Meyer & Associates, Inc.|
Arena Football 5,201
|Saginaw Gears (IHL) (1972-1983)
Saginaw Wheels (CHL) (1994-1996)
Saginaw Lumber Kings (UHL) (1996-1998)
Saginaw Gears (UHL) (1998-2000)
Saginaw Spirit (OHL) (2002-present)
Saginaw Sting (UIFL) (2008-2009, 2011-future)
The Dow Event Center (formerly known as The Saginaw County Event Center, formerly known as The Saginaw Civic Center) is in downtown Saginaw, Michigan. The center consists of several parts: The Atrium, The Garden Room, Heritage Theater, The Unity Hall, and Wendler Arena. It also houses the OHL junior ice hockey team Saginaw Spirit and the Ultimate Indoor Football League's Saginaw Sting. The facility has housed a number of hockey teams in the past, such as the Saginaw Lumber Kings and both the IHL and UHL incarnations of the Saginaw Gears.
Wendler Arena has a capacity of 7,600 people for concerts (without the ice), and 5,500 for hockey games. Heritage Theater has a capacity of 2,276 people.
Originally built in 1972 as part of an urban development program, the center is the only structure left. Most of the other buildings were razed in the 1980s due to many problems, including health risks and foreclosure/bankruptcy.
For a time in the 1990s, the facility nearly faced foreclosure and bankruptcy due to lack of funds provided by the city. The facility underwent a series of much-needed renovations in early 2000s, mainly in hopes for a better facility to host their newly-acquired hockey team. The naming rights of the facility were transferred in September 2004 to The Dow Chemical Company , headquartered in nearby Midland. The center was used two times during the summer of 2004 as a center for Republican political rallies in support for the re-election of U.S. President George W. Bush.
Voters transferred the ownership from the City of Saginaw to Saginaw County on May 8, 2001. The city then closed the facility on June 30, 2001, and the county reopened it on July 1. The county then appointed SMG Worldwide to manage the facility, and started updating and renovating the building. The total cost of the renovations was tagged at $17 million, and they were completed in 2003.
The center hosts many events, concerts, political rallies, and even graduations. Trade shows also take place here; the complex has 25,000 square feet (2,300 m2) of space at Wendler Arena.
Jehovah's Witnesses District Conventions are held annually at the Dow Event Center. Starting in mid-June, and ending in early July, 3 day conventions held on every weekend in that time will occur. The Jehovah's Witnesses first started using the building in 2005, after rumors of demolition for the Pontiac Silverdome raised concern over where meetings would be held, as the Silverdome was the previous venue. 
- Staff. Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–2012. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved March 31, 2013.
- Jehovah's Witnesses: April 6, 2006 News Release
- The Dow Event Center site
- Dow announcement to purchase naming rights
- Dow Event Center press release on naming rights
- Dow Event Center History
- SMG Worldwide Management Group