In 2017 the Philadelphia Flyers hired Andrea Helfrich to take over the duties as not only the in-arena host but the digital host. She had previously traveled the world working for Ultra as a host for their shows but now is back home in Philadephia working for her hometown team.
These days her life is a little different than it normally would be. The days of running around the arena with Gritty and hosting segments for the fans are on hold. Now she is having video chats playing games with players or having them teach her Tik Tok dances. Let’s not forget her work with the very crazy yet lovable Gritty with the Gritty Quarter Hour of Power that was a smash for Flyers fans during a portion of the quarantine.
Without further ado, meet Andrea Helfrich of the Philadelphia Flyers.
How would you describe your job with the Flyers?
As the In-Arena and digital host for the Philadelphia Flyers, I have the opportunity to connect our fans with the team both on and off the ice. Whether live at the games or on social media, I strive to create entertaining content that features the personality of our players.
How do you feel your work with Ultra helped or prepared you for your work with the Flyers and vise versa?
With Ultra worldwide, I’ve flown across the world into time zones 6 to 12 hours ahead of mine. As soon as I touch down, we begin filming and live streaming to millions of viewers. That fast-paced, high-pressure environment is similar in sports and those experiences helped a lot.
What does an average home game day look like for you?
Long! Home game days are about 13 hours, we start at 9am and have a normal workday which consists of meetings, video editing, podcast recordings, and filming. Around 4pm I start getting ready for the game which starts with hair and makeup and then I focus on our scripts, game day notes, and run of the show.
Do you have a favorite interaction or moment with a player that you can share? It can be from one of the video segments you’ve done or just from around the rink?
My favorite moments are seeing the interactions between our players and fans or people in the community. During the holidays, part of the team visits the patients at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. I tag along to capture the moments during which I witness so many special ones! From Nolan Patrick bonding with a patient over favorite colored markers to Sean Couturier comparing his missing front teeth with a little guy who had just lost his, watching those kids light up is absolutely priceless.
How did you come up with your podcast, Everything But Hockey?
Everything but Hockey was a collaborative effort within our content team. We wanted to give listeners a different perspective on Flyers hockey and it’s been one of my favorite projects to date!
What do you find to be the most challenging aspect as a woman working in hockey?
I get this question a lot and am happy to say, any challenges I encounter have nothing to do with my gender. We have a front office filled with female executives, directors, and managers– I’m lucky to work with such a talented team.
What advice do you have for women looking to expand into sports?
There are so many different ways to work in sports, whether it’s for the team, the broadcast partner, the training facility, etc. I’d highly recommend an internship! They’re a great way to get your foot in the door and start learning about the many different departments and determining your best. One of my first jobs was a video editor for CSN Philly, now NBC Sports
Thank you, Andrea, for taking the time to speak with me and answer my questions! I can’t wait to see what you have in store for Flyers fans during the playoffs!
You can find Andrea on twitter @Andrea_Helfrich and Instagram @AndreaHelfrichofficial. Andrea’s podcast Anything but Hockey is found where you listen to podcasts.