Soccer / Football, Seattle
Seeing a Sounders game at Qwest Field has to be one of the most fun sporting experiences in the city. The entire stadium get into the game, standing and chanting the entire time. Be sure to stop by Pioneer Square pre-game, where the supporters gather and march to Qwest together.
Seattle did a very smart thing when it decided to tear down the eyesore Kingdome Stadium in 2002. The Kingdome was formerly home to the Seahawks (football), Mariners (baseball) and idiotically, Sonics (basketball and gone). When the Kingdome was torn down (imploded, actually), Seattle replaced it with the Qwest Field for football and the Seattle Sounders (soccer) and Safeco Field for baseball. I've watched a Mariners game at Safeco, and it is a very nice ballpark.
On my last visit to Seattle, a stand up comedian commented on how tenacious Seattleites are, by pointing out that Seattleites stubbornly hang on to things long after they should be let go - case in point, the Seahawks and the Mariners, whom both just came off losing seasons. My response is, Yeah, but you did tear down that god awful Kingdome.
In the photo, the 3 dome like structures in the background, from left to right, are Qwest Field, Safeco Field, and Mount Rainer.
We make an annual trek to Seattle each fall to watch the University of Washington Huskies play football. To date, the Huskies have won every game we have attended, so I think it is us. They were underdogs in all games, I might add. We're the reason for those at home wins. It also hasn't rained at any football game we've attended. Good luck abounds when we arrive at Husky Stadium, what can I say.
Equipment: Lotsa layers. I bring a bag of stuff - couple of shirts, pile jacket, wind jacket, hat, gloves. Usually by the fourth quarter (if it's an evening game), my bag is empty and I'm wearing all the gear.
We happened to be in Seattle on a Sunday when the Seahawks, the city's National Football League team, were hosting the Arizona Cardinals. We couldn't go to the game but walking around the Pioneer Square area surrounded by thousands of fans was quite the experience! Even though it was still fairly early in the morning, all the bars were packed with people wearing Seahawks jerseys. There were plenty of ticket scalpers around so I guess we could have gone to the game if we'd been willing to pay the price, but instead we settled on stopping by a sports shop on 1st Avenue (http://www.sportsdenseattle.com), where Sylvain picked up a really cool Seahawks hat at a surprisingly affordable price, and then we watched the first half of the game while having lunch at Fado's (http://www.fadoirishpub.com/seattle), an Irish pub also located on 1st Avenue. The Seattle Seahawks play at Qwest Field, which is often described as the loudest stadium in the entire league, and for the rest of the afternoon we could hear the 67,000 fans cheering even though we were at least 1 mile away from the stadium. Next time we'll absolutely have to go to a game!
Equipment: I wouldn't dare enter that stadium without wearing a Seahawks jersey! Many fans in Seattle wear the #12 jersey, which was retired in 1984 in honour of the team's fans. In American football, fans are often referred to as "the 12th man" since there are 11 players on the field. The level of noise inside Qwest Field can reach 137 decibels when the team is on defense, which has caused a league high record of 100 false starts for visiting teams between 2005 and 2010, including 11 false starts in just one game.
Seattle football may be in a slump on the field, but the fans are as loyal and rabid as ever. Spending an afternoon before the game in a parking lot is the PERFECT way to experience an NFL game in the Northwest. You can wear your jersey, mingle with the masses and "prepare for battle".
Equipment: A grill, plenty of adult beverages and $50 for parking...
2008 was not a great year to follow the Washington (football) Huskies. However, anytime you can visit Husky Stadium with family and friends is worth the trip.
Equipment: Tent, grill, cooler full of adult beverages.
If you are in Seattle and it is Football season I would definately recomend trying to catch a Seahawk game. The new Qwest Stadium is awsome and the action is too! This stadium has ample seating for all you fans. 67,000 seats with 1,400 reserved for folks with disabilities. While the stadium is open at least half of the seats seem to have a roof over them. But if you are a true fan you will come prepared for whatever suprises the weather is going to bring. The stadium has several elevators and there are restrooms at almost every entrance to the stands. There are tons of concession stands and a variety of food choices. I must say the garlic fries were gagging me a bit. Nope I did not eat them but the gentleman behind me certainly had more then enough for me to whiff. Our seats were in section 112 row B real close to the action. Since there are some serious big screens at either end of the stadium I felt the seats were perfect. I could see things right on the field and watch the plays up on the screen. Perfect! The Seahawks have Taima the hawk as thier mascot and are only the second team in the NFL to have a live mascot. He is an Auger Hawk and very beautiful. If you have seats up close you may even get to pet him. My battery died before he came up to us so no pics of him. If you do decide to go and are lucky enough to actually get tickets be sure and go early enough to get a decent parking spot. There are not that many spaces at the stadium itself but many garages in the imediate area. We parked very close and it was $30. I understand if you get a spot at the stadium it is $37 so I was not bothered by the price we payed. They will definately do a bag search and a pat down before you enter the stadium. It is a must. Also they allow no one to re-enter after kick off. So if you need something in your vehicle be smart and take it with you in the first place. Then go to your seat, kick back and enjoy!
Equipment: Be sure to bring jackets, blankets or sunscreen depending on the weather. Cameras are allowed so make sure you have film and batteries. We took stuff in a small backpack and it worked out fine.
The University of Washington Husky football team has one of the storied programs on the west coast and year in provides a very good team, usually ranked in the top 20. The national championship team of 1991 was one of the most dominating teams of the century. The stadium is defnitely a college stadium with none of the modern perks. Plus, being on campus, there is no alcohol served. :( bummer. But when the stadium is filled, it is definitely a fun place to be.
The local soccer team is the Seattle Sounders and they have been around in one form or another for the past 32 years. They are currently in the USL Division 1 league, one step below the MLS. Since 1994, they have consistenly been one of the top teams in the league, finishing first four times and winning the league championsip 3 times. There current venue is Seahawks stadium (Qwest Field) which is a large stadium and a good place to enjoy the game. The tickets are reasonable and there is plenty of entertainment. As always, the two biggest rivals are Vancouver and Portland, both of whom are total schmucks and resort to dirty play non-stop. Somethings will never change! :) Their schedule is usually from April to through September. They play 28 league games with a couple exhibitions against MLS, Mexican, or Europe league teams. Go Sounders!!!
Seahawk Stadium was recently named the best place to experience an NFL game by Sporting News Magazine. There are many bars and restaurants in the outlaying areas that make the pre and post game experience a great one. For visiting teams, it's one of the loudest and toughest places to play. It was opened in 2002. It seats 72,000 and there's not a bad seat in the house. Cost to the public was $300 million. Cost to Paul Allen, the Seahawks owner and Microsoft co-founder was $130 million dollars.
Equipment: Early in the season(Aug-mid October), a sweatshirt or windbreaker is fine. After that, wear multiple layers of clothing and gloves. Most of the stadium is covered but the first level seats nearest to the field and the north end of the stadium are not. If you are sitting in these areas, you will get wet. We've been real lucky since the stadium opened and it's only rained two or three times during an actual Seahawk game. There are many modes of public tranist, mainly busses. I normally take the Sounder(train), the round trip cost is $6.00 for an adult and $4.50 for a child. It drops you off right in front of the stadium.
Home of the 1991 National Champions. Husky Stadium is the most scenic sports stadiums I've been to. Located on Union Bay in Lake Washington it has a seating capacity of 72,500, the nation's 15th largest on-campus facility. Husky Stadium can be one of the loudest stadiums in the nation. Crowd noise has reached 130 decibels in the past.
Parking can be horrible. I'd recommend going to the game by boat if you can. There are boat shuttle services available. You don't have to worry about traffic and it's such a unique experience tailgating on the water. There is a boat taxi that takes you from your boat to the stadium for $5.00. In the fall it's very comfortable, but bring warm clothes in the winter.
The Seahawks also have a new stadium: Qwest Field - named after the local phone company sponsor.
Though this stadium does not have a retractable roof, 70 percent of the seats have some protection from the rainy weather and wind.
I am not a big fan of football, but my partner works for the phone company so we often go to games with clients or award winning employees. In that case, we watch the game from the company suite - which is the height of luxury.
For the rest of you normal folks, I recommend club seats. They are bigger, padded, and with more leg room. They also have exclusive access to the club lounges which are really nice.
I figure, if you're not bringing kids, you might as well enjoy the game in style. For most of us, a football game might happen once a year - why not do it right. And, the view of downtown is even better here than at Safeco Field.
Finally, Seahawks fans are known for being VERY loud - join in and scream your lungs out. The sound is not defening like it used to be in the old enclosed Kingdome, but it can still be fun.
Equipment: Definetely dress warmly. Many people wear blue/silver - the colors of the team. If you sit in the end zone area (The Hawks Nest) bring a poncho in case it rains. Definetely everyone should always bring a jacket no matter where you sit.
This was the first game in United's tour of the USa in 2003.
We played Glasgow Celtic on the 22 July and beat them 4-0, even managed to give them a penalty which they duly managed to miss.
As this was a friendly I told Nic not to expect too much, but how wrong I was...Ruud was in spectacular form!
Better bundle up if you go to a winter game at Seahawks Stadium. One end of the stadium is open all the way down to field level (like a hole) and the wind comes sweeping through quite heavily. Wearing a jersey doesn't help against the cold and I found that out very early in the game. Heavy face paint does not provide warmth either. Here we have defensive end Grant Wistrom, from Nebraska, he is one of our leading sackers.
There are some famous fries being served up at Seahawks Stadium; garlic fries. They are really tasty, and they should be, I think they cost four dollars for a small plate of them, oh well. Nothing better than warm fries and a jumbo dog on a cool winter day. Here we have Dexter McCleon, a DB that has been with us for a while. He is good, but may not be back next year.