National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

Metro Detroit’s major sports and entertainment venues are now certified to spot, report and prepare for a wide range of weather conditions. “The National Weather Service (NWS) now recognizes Ilitch Holdings, Inc. as “StormReady” for Olympia Entertainment’s major event venues both owned and operated by Olympia Entertainment.” The sites include Little Caesars Arena, Comerica Park, DTE Energy Music Theatre, Meadow Brook Amphitheatre at Oakland University, the historic Fox Theatre and the Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill.

Michigan StormReady Communities

Learn how your community can become StormReady

The StormReady certification brings together emergency managers from federal law enforcement groups to county leadership across Southeast Michigan, including Michigan State Police, Wayne State and Oakland universities, among others. Together, they collaborate to ensure the safety and security of visitors at the region’s major sports and entertainment venues.

“StormReady encourages communities to take a new, proactive approach to improving local hazardous weather operations and public awareness," said Richard Pollman, Warning Coordination Meteorologist at the NWS weather forecast office in White Lake, Michigan. “StormReady provides communities with improved
communication and safety skills needed to save lives and property – before and during the event.”

With more than 50 specially-trained weather spotters, the six venues are continuously monitored for signs of inclement weather.

“We put in a great deal of behind-the-scenes effort to help ensure the best possible guest experience at our venues,” said Chris Granger, Group President for Sports and Entertainment at Ilitch Holdings, Inc. “With the National Weather Service in the lead, this program helps many organizations collaborate across the region to
help ensure our guests always have a great experience at both indoor and outdoor venues.”

The nationwide StormReady weather preparedness program helps local communities develop plans to handle severe weather conditions. The program provides communities across the country with recommended processes to coordinate between the region’s National Weather Forecast office and state and local emergency
managers and businesses that oversee security and weather preparedness.

Last year, Little Caesars Arena, home of the NHL’s Detroit Red Wings and the NBA’s Detroit Pistons, received the SAFETY Act Certification, the highest level of protection awarded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Managed and operated by Olympia Entertainment, Little Caesars Arena is the first combined NHL, NBA and entertainment venue to earn the certification. Comerica Park, home to the MLB’s Detroit Tigers, received the SAFETY Act Certification in 2015.

“Obtaining StormReady certification demonstrates our commitment to protecting our patrons and staff,” said Rick Fenton, Vice President of Security for Ilitch Holdings, Inc. “The StormReady certification is also part of our continuous effort to improve our SAFETY Act certification.”

To be recognized as StormReady, a site must:
• Establish a 24-hour warning point and emergency operations center
• Have more than one method to receive severe weather forecasts and warnings and to alert the public
• Create a system that monitors local weather conditions
• Promote the importance of public readiness through multiple outreach efforts
• Develop a formal hazardous weather plan, which includes training severe weather spotters and holding emergency exercises

StormReady began in 1999 and today includes over 2,700 communities in the United States. Ilitch Holdings, Inc. becomes the eighth commercial entity in Michigan to earn the StormReady designation. The recognition will last for three years.

About NOAA and National Weather Service

NOAA’s National Weather Service is the primary source of weather data, forecasts and warnings for the United States and its territories. NOAA's National Weather Service operates the most advanced weather and flood warning and forecast system in the world, helping to protect lives and property.

About Ilitch Holdings, Inc.

Ilitch Holdings, Inc., was established in 1999 to provide professional services to certain businesses that were founded or purchased by Detroit entrepreneurs Mike and/or Marian Ilitch. The Ilitch companies represent leading brands in the food, sports and entertainment industries, including Little Caesars, Blue Line Distribution,
the Detroit Red Wings, Olympia Entertainment, the Detroit Tigers, Olympia Development, Little Caesars Pizza Kit Fundraising Program and Champion Foods. The organization also has a joint venture interest in 313 Presents. Additionally, Marian Ilitch owns MotorCity Casino Hotel.

About Olympia Entertainment

Headquartered in the heart of The District Detroit, Olympia Entertainment owns and operates the Fox Theatre, City Theatre and Hockeytown Cafe, and provides facility management services at Little Caesars Arena, DTE Energy Music Theatre, Meadow Brook Amphitheatre and Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill. The company also serves as the sales and marketing organization for the Detroit Red Wings and provides additional services to 313 Presents.

Olympia Entertainment is an Ilitch company. Other Ilitch companies include: Little Caesars Pizza, Blue Line Foodservice Distribution, the Detroit Red Wings, the Detroit Tigers, Olympia Development of Michigan, Little Caesars Pizza Kit Fundraising Program, Ilitch Holdings, Inc., MotorCity Casino Hotel and Champion Foods. The Ilitch companies also maintain a joint venture interest in 313 Presents.