Impressions of a Beaver Stadium first timer

Discussion in 'BWI / McAndrew Board' started by LafayetteBear, Oct 23, 2017.

  1. LafayetteBear

    LafayetteBear Well-Known Member
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    Got back to the Bay Area late last night from my trip to State College and have to say that was quite an experience. A few posters here asked me to report back after the weekend so I thought I'd oblige them. My comments are somewhat random, and cover things other than the game. Hope people don't mind.

    1. Thursday night. Spent much of Thursday night there, after flying into Baltimore and driving up. Stayed at the Days Inn on Pugh Street.. Amenities are not awesome, but decent, and the location can't be beat. Had dinner and drinks with the boys in Mad Mex. Love their margaritas, and their patio. It was 70 degrees at night, on October 19, in State College. Hard to believe.

    Spent the rest of the night at the Skeller. What a great place. It just reeks of PSU and State College history and tradition. My kind of place. I know bars like Champs are popular with the students and younger alums, but you can go to a sports bar with multiple TV's and loud piped in music just about anywhere. There is only one Skeller. Got a tour from my son, who took me into the back portion where bands frequently play, and saw the caricatures of other Big Ten schools painted on the walls. Great stuff. Loved all of the memorabilia. Would hate to be down there if a fire broke out, but it was fantastic place

    2. Friday in State College. The buzz on the day prior to a home football game is palpable. You can feel it walking down College Avenue and through campus. It was no doubt enhanced by the fact that Game Day was setting up, but still pretty incredible. Had to go to the Creamery. The line for ice cream was probably one hundred yards long, so we bought take out ice cream. Friday night, we went to a place called the Boalsburg Tavern (formerly Duffy's Tavern). Wonderful atmosphere and drinks. (Would not order the Jambalaya a second time, however.)

    3. Saturday morning. Got to watch Game Day from an apartment which has a second floor balcony overhanging College Avenue, and is directly across from Old Main. About 70 yards from the Game Day stage. The crowd size and volume was amazing. I've never seen more people, or signs, at a Game Day.

    4. Saturday afternoon. Attended a tailgater organized by the parents of my son's girlfriend, and there were roughly fifty people there. It was located about 80 yards east of the baseball stadium scoreboard, overlooking a very large Winnebago/RV parking area. Three tents, three BBQ grills, four banquet tables loaded with food, full bar (complete with two "shot skis"), corn hole, beer pong, life size cardboard cutout of Joe, the whole works. The scale of the tailgate scene was, along with the size of the crowd, perhaps the most memorable aspect of the weekend. I have never seen anything like it. At Cal, the football stadium is shoehorned into the campus and surrounding community. There are NO large expanses of grass or gravel parking areas in which to tailgate. My fraternity house was located one block (200 yards) from the stadium. That was convenient, but there is a lot to be said about having those large parking areas. They are obviously necessary for parking, but they have also fostered a PSU tailgate experience which I suspect few schools can match.

    5. Saturday evening. We entered the Stadium on what I believe is the east side (the side that houses the luxury boxes). We sat in Section "EBU," about thirty rows down from where the year 2016 is written into the stadium wall. Pretty close to the student section. The crowd was enormous (apparently a PSU record at 110,000 plus), and bigger than any crowd I have ever seen. I think the size of the crowd was enhanced by the fact that everyone was wearing white (myself included). I have seen well over one hundred Lions' games on TV, but seeing a game in Beaver Stadium, it is apparent to me that you miss a lot by watching on TV. First, there are the pregame festivities (Blue Band performing, alma mater, drum major doing a flip and the splits, and the slick video production they showed on the scoreboards). They were great. They reminded me a lot of the pregame festivities at Bryant Denny Stadium. Really organized, and effective at pumping up the crowd.

    Second, TV watchers miss a lot of the stuff that occurs during timeouts and other intermissions, when TV goes to commercials. The Blue Band plays during virtually every timeout or intermission, and the crowd really gets into it. There are quite a number of songs the lyrics of which the entire crowd has committed to memory. The Lionettes did a nice routine, and the crowd obviously appreciated their efforts. The lighted cell phones during "Sweet Caroline" was really a good touch. I was not all that enamored with the "Thriller" routine, but otherwise, the Lion was in great form. Looked like he went through some kind of hand off ceremony with the drum major just before the start of the game, but I could not tell exactly what it was. The white pom poms they give the students really work well for a White Out game.

    In summary, I was really impressed, and look forward to going back for more games. I may get a chance pretty soon. My youngest son (a high school senior) was with us for the weekend, and PSU is in his top three schools for college.
     
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  2. mn78psu83

    mn78psu83 Well-Known Member
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    Glad to hear you had such a great time.
     
  3. Vermilion

    Vermilion Well-Known Member
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    Great recap and glad you had a great time Bear, truly a remarkable place, especially on a Football Weekend and I too stay at the "dated" Days Inn for their fantastic location...
     
  4. psuro

    psuro Well-Known Member
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    Glad you enjoyed. The Beav is a truly special place especially during a White Out.
     
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  5. Midnighter

    Midnighter Well-Known Member
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    After reading your post...

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Woodpecker

    Woodpecker Well-Known Member
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    Wait, you were wearing white? I think I saw you on TV!
     
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  7. BobPSU92

    BobPSU92 Well-Known Member
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    Imagine how much better it will be when you do it a few more times.

    :eek:
     
  8. NittPicker

    NittPicker Well-Known Member
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    The lion does the Thriller routine every couple years when there is a home game sort of close to Halloween. This year's lion put forth a valiant effort but dancing doesn't seem to be his forte. A few years back the lion had some serious moves. He nailed the Michael Jackson choreography from the video.
     
  9. LafayetteBear

    LafayetteBear Well-Known Member
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    Well, I was wearing a white baseball hat with a yellow script "Cal" on it. Thought I might bump into a Board member or two, so I took a chance on that. The rest was PSU gear. Got some pretty entertaining/quizzical looks when I went to use the mens' room at halftime.
     
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  10. BobPSU92

    BobPSU92 Well-Known Member
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    :eek:
     
  11. Woodpecker

    Woodpecker Well-Known Member
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    Now try to describe "the girl in the yellow dress" in his Disco Inferno routine
     
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  12. LafayetteBear

    LafayetteBear Well-Known Member
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    I'm hoping they related to my hat. :eek:
     
  13. psuro

    psuro Well-Known Member
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    Yiu didn't use the urinal as a toilet did you? :eek:
     
  14. LafayetteBear

    LafayetteBear Well-Known Member
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    C'mon, dude. I didn't go to Rutgers. :eek:
     
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  15. roswelllion

    roswelllion Well-Known Member
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  16. ILLINOISLION

    ILLINOISLION Well-Known Member
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    LB - Tough loss for Cal on Sat, but glad you had the chance to experience one of the great sporting venues in the United States.....in the world.

    I’m blessed to have the best in CFB AND CBB in my blood.....Beaver Stadium and Allen Field House.

    (And I’ve been to Augusta National.)

    HAIL to the Lion.....HELL to UMich!

    AND

    WE ARE.....DESPITE THE BOT.....PENN STATE!
     
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  17. mn78psu83

    mn78psu83 Well-Known Member
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    Who is Yiu?
     
  18. MtNittany

    MtNittany Well-Known Member
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    Flags all over the field.
     
  19. ILLINOISLION

    ILLINOISLION Well-Known Member
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    Yellow flags for the yellow dress!
     
  20. KnightSlayer

    KnightSlayer Well-Known Member
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    I tried to get my buddy, who is a hunter, to go full orange hunting gear head to toe. He didn't buy my compelling arguments of, "you can be that guy" and internet infamy.
     
  21. Nittany.Lion

    Nittany.Lion Well-Known Member
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    Do you have ties to PSU? Since you're a regular here I always assumed that you were a former student (who went to Cal also)

    Thanks for the report!
     
  22. pandaczar12

    pandaczar12 Well-Known Member
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    PSU is a special place, very few can compare. Many have long been jealous that their college experience just didn't stack up. That's why so many jumped on the false narrative, to try and take it away from us.
     
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  23. BobPSU92

    BobPSU92 Well-Known Member
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    Saturday night showcased how special Penn State is. Sure, it helped that we won and won big, but the crowd, the players, Franklin, etc. can't be topped. There's no place like Penn State.
     
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  24. Ten Thousan Marbles

    Ten Thousan Marbles Well-Known Member
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    The hand-off thing with the Lion.....I think the Lion hands a Drum Major's Baton to him after the flip. After that handoff, they salute each other.
     
    24 Ten Thousan Marbles, Oct 23, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2017
  25. LafayetteBear

    LafayetteBear Well-Known Member
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    Went to Cal (Class of '80)
    Wife went to PSU (Class of '82)
    Two sons now at PSU (Class of '18)
    Youngest son (H.S. Class of '18) considering PSU.

    I'm seriously outnumbered.
     
  26. BobPSU92

    BobPSU92 Well-Known Member
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    You and sandy, Cal and PSU.

    :eek:
     
  27. LafayetteBear

    LafayetteBear Well-Known Member
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    Ouch. The best thing I can say about her is that she does very little, and that includes not getting in the way. IMO, PSU athletics would thrive with or without her.
     
  28. psuro

    psuro Well-Known Member
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    It's just best to give up. Speak to our resident the culture expert Bob about these matters. He will fill you in with the details.
     
  29. Nittany.Lion

    Nittany.Lion Well-Known Member
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    No wonder you're a PSU fan, you just don't have a choice.

    Holy crap... you have to pay out of state tuition for two!!! Do CA state schools still have reasonable tuition costs?
     
  30. step.eng69

    step.eng69 Well-Known Member
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    Sorry Bear, wives have a serious beat down method. Few guys survive with all body parts in tact if one digresses from their goal.
     
  31. PSU77sh

    PSU77sh Well-Known Member
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    Daughter's work friend flew in from LA for the weekend. She had never been east of Pittsburgh. She had gone to a non-football school in Cali and had tailgated once a few weeks ago at a Rams game. We kept chuckling that she had no idea what she was in for. Last Tuesday, she went to get her nails done (in LA). Lady asked her if she was doing anything over the weekend. Girl says she's flying to visit a friend in PA. Lady wants to know if she's going to THE GAME. Girl says, uh yes..... Lady insisted she needed blue and white nails. Bottom line is she was totally impressed with the game day experience and loved it all.
     
  32. Dupage Lion

    Dupage Lion Well-Known Member
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    That apartment directly across from Old Main sounds like the one I spent my Sr year and Summer Term of 1966. Right above McMullen's Florist and the My O My ( don't do the basement bar). We partied every night in the Summer ( I would never had gone Winter Term had I known about Whipple
    and Stone Valley ? .
     
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  33. psrurock

    psrurock Well-Known Member
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    Nothing better than hanging out with 111,000 of your family members. Still remains the innocence we had in the 80's and everyone looking out for everyone. My daughter hs senior camped in Happy Valley. Got up at 3:30 to be on game day and had Corso surf over her. All she knew him by was Coach Lee. Loves Penn State and said she will cry if she can't go there.
     
  34. Thorndike2012

    Thorndike2012 Well-Known Member
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    Been a PSU fan all of my life. Only ever been to ONE white out. It was one of the most memorable nights of my life. And I'm 58. You've just seen a one of a kind thing. Wish I was there.
     
  35. LafayetteBear

    LafayetteBear Well-Known Member
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    Annual in state tuition for UC schools is currently $11,220 and fees $2,289. UC Berkeley out of state undergrads paid $40,191 in tuition and fees in 2016 - 2017. $2,289 was fees, and $37,902 was for tuition. You can perhaps glean why it would not break my heart if the youngest son chose UCSB (one of his other finalists). But after this last weekend, he is telling me it bothers him that the Gauchos do not have a big time football team. The writing may be on the wall...
     
  36. Tom McAndrew

    Tom McAndrew Well-Known Member
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    Days Inn is a great place to stay if you want to experience downtown PSU on a football weekend. Mad Mex -- I know quite a few kids that basically went there most days of the week last semester of their senior year. The patio is hard to beat when the weather is nice.

    That buzz is so palpable for big games. Interestingly, the students get a tad annoyed with the invasion of their campus (and the long lines and cover charges at their favorite bars) on some football weekends, but they don't seem to mind it as much for the big weekends, as they're as psyched as those that travel to State College for the game/weekend

    It is pretty unique. I've taken a number of friends to a game, and each of them has been blown away by the size of the tailgate scene

    Those are good seats. I like that area of the stadium, as you really get to appreciate how much noise and passion the students bring to the game.

    You'e been a good sport over the past 4 years in asking questions about PSU. I didn't realize until you posted a week or so ago that you had not attended a game at Beaver Stadium. You picked a good game to attend. As for your youngest son, if he attended the game, and doesn't opt for PSU, then I can only conclude that your wife's brains weren't passed along to him. (I kid, I kid)

    I'm glad you got to a game while the twins were still PSU students.
     
  37. CDLionFL

    CDLionFL Well-Known Member
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    I love hearing the first-time experiences from those who haven't been to Beaver Stadium. One of my co-workers was filming for University of Michigan (ironic given he was on the Appy State team that beat Michigan) and was blown away by the atmosphere. It means so much being there that when you go a decent amount of time not being there, you really miss it. Hell, I ain't afraid to say that when the first video came up on ABC of the Stadium that it got a little misty in the living room.
     
  38. Nittany Ned2

    Nittany Ned2 Well-Known Member
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    I brought a Cal buddy of mine to the ND vs PSU Whiteout game several years ago he couldn’t believe it. He had grown up going to Cal games on Saturdays and Niner games on Sundays. He was impressed at the size and noise level of the Beav.
     
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  39. step.eng69

    step.eng69 Well-Known Member
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    I see what you did there...
    "Got some pretty entertaining/quizzical looks when I went to use the mens' room at halftime."

    [​IMG]
     

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