Sunday, November 11, 2012

Sunday Stadium Review - Cardinals

 Arizona Cardinals 

Name of Stadium: University of Phoenix Stadium
Capacity: 63,400
Game Attended: NFC Championship vs. Philadelphia Eagles in January of 2009
Worked a game at this stadium? Yes.

So far, this is the farthest west I have been for a game.  I totally loved being in gorgeous, warm weather in the middle of January for it, too.

View from our offices at the NFL Headquarters hotel for the week

I talked a little about my experiences working AFC and NFC Championship games here.  This particular trip was my first week long big event work trip.  It was a great time, but on to the subject at hand - the stadium!

We took a staff shuttle bus from the hotel to the stadium.  It seemed like we were on the bus forever, but when we finally arrived I remember thinking that the stadium looked very strange on the outside.  Unlike any football stadium I had ever seen.  It was silver with hardly any logos or branding.  Very strange.

We made our way inside the stadium where we headed directly for the suites. At this point in my career, I was quite reluctant to wander very far from my post so I spent most of my time there.  However, we did head over to a press lounge area where I ran into pre-gone out of his mind Tiki Barber.  I had written a paper about twins in sports during my undergraduate days and learned lots about Tiki and Ronde Barber in the process.  As a result, I struck up a conversation with him about my research.  He mostly listened to me talk, but did seem genuinely interested in the outcome of my paper.  Seemed like a nice guy.

After that encounter, I completed some tasks for work (mainly taking the game coin over to the visiting owner's suite) and then headed back to our home base suite for the game.  The game was a great one!  It was the first time that the Cardinals were playing for the opportunity to go to the Super Bowl so to say the crowd was hyped up is a MAJOR understatement.  They were psyched!!

Blurry picture, but trying to capture the essence of "Rise Up, Red Sea"!
Overall, the experience was electric.  I'm not sure it was your typical Sunday afternoon atmosphere, but it was fun to watch these fans get so pumped!  I think that the interior of the stadium was very nice, but the exterior was definitely lacking.  For a new(er) stadium, I think it could have been more impressive from the outside.  Also, the flow of traffic in and out of the stadium left something to be desired.  On my way back to the hotel after the game, I rode with a colleague and we were in traffic in the parking lot for at least an hour.  It wasn't as bad as the situation in New England, but it was a close second.  Here is one last picture of almost the whole interior of the stadium - very nice place...and almost all cheering for the home team!

Andrea :)

1 comment:

  1. My husband wants to explore this stadium soon. :)