COLUMBUS, Ohio — After getting the green light from the Ohio Department of Health, Nationwide Arena welcomed fans back at 10% capacity for Tuesday’s home Blue Jackets Game.

What You Need To Know

  • The last time fans were allowed in Nationwide Arena was March 1, 2020

  • Many protocols are in place, such as fans are required to wear masks — not bandanas or neck gaiters

  • For fans like Jim Durham, it's a moment he'll never forget

 It’s great news for season ticket holders like Jim Durham, who has been going to games before the Blue Jackets were even the Blue Jackets.    

“It started with our parents,” said Durham. “We grew up here in Central Ohio, and my mom and dad started taking us to the fairgrounds to watch the I think it was first the Seals or Checkers and Owls then The Chill.”

He’s a jackets super fan with part of his basement decked out in memorabilia.   

“I got about 12 Jersey’s and 100 Blue Jackets Shirts.”

He even has a special nickname, “Cheater Guy.”

“When there's a penalty, I stand up — and I can be really loud — and I yell ‘Cheaters! Cheaters Detroit Red Wings Cheaters!'”

Durham was a part of the handful of fans allowed back in Nationwide Arena to watch the team take on the Detroit Red Wings. 

“When they were talking about what they were going to do this year it didn’t look very positive. We were excited as heck when they announced a few fans, I figured I was going to be high up on the totem pole.”

Nationwide Arena announced Monday it earned GBAC Star Certification — a program that requires showing 20 different elements related to sanitization.