It’s that time of year again. Smiles are growing for all sports fans. That beautiful smell you get when you’re walking by that perfect grass. You finally see all the tailgaters whom you saw last year. For many people, it’s Christmas. It’s the most wonderful time of the year: That second week in September. The NFL season begins and all the diehard fans are back to the stadium. For me, I would not want to be anywhere else but Lincoln Financial Field. For me, an NFL stadium has to meet a certain criteria. The food has to be perfect football food. The stadium needs to have a beautiful field, and no matter where your seat is, it shouldn’t be considered a ‘bad seat in the house’. Finally, the stadium has to be filled with fans who will show how loyal they really are.
Lincoln Financial Field, better known to fans as “The Linc”, is the home of the Philadelphia Eagles. Every year I take at least three trips down to the city of brother lee love and enjoy the Philadelphia Eagles. This year, on September 25th, I watched the Eagles lose to the Giants. It was a mess of a game but, I always love going to the Linc. I have been going here for the past ten years and it has been great and I have created many different memories. The stadium opened on August 3rd, 2003, after two years of construction that began on May 7th, 2001. (PhiladelpgiaEagles.com) The stadium replaced Veterans Stadium as the Eagles’ home stadium. While its total capacity barely changed, the new stadium contains double the number of luxury and wheelchair-accessible seats, along with more modern services. It has a seating capacity of 68,532 (69,144 with Standing Room Only tickets). It is located in South Philadelphia on Pattison Avenue between 11th and 10th streets. (Linclonfinancialfield.com)
To me, the stadium itself is just a small portion of the whole experience. The first thing you smell as you park your car and step out is all the great food that is cooking from all the loyal tailgaters. I have met people who have traveled across the country to just be outside and tailgate. I smell hot dogs and burgers and steak and beer. The smell of sweet BBQ cooked food really gets me hungry. Its just everything a great fan loves. This meets my criteria of great food. Philly fans love their food!
When you look up, the first thing that catches your eye is the stadium. You see the flag high above with the Eagles logo on it and you know you’re in eagle land. You see all the great vehicles people are driving, many people are driving buses that they bought and have now covered it and painted it with the Eagles colors and logos. It’s pretty remarkable. This showcases all the dedication and fan loyalty that I was looking for. When you’re still in the parking lot, you hear all the people talking and you hear radios and music blaring as people are getting pumped up for game time. To me, the main thing that stands out is everyone is so nice and people look out for each other here. If someone walks up and needs a hand and they are wearing an eagle’s jersey, you help them. That’s just the way it goes. The criteria for tailgating and loyalty is at top-notch when it comes to Philadelphia and it has been met.
The best part of the whole day is that first sight of the field. You wait in line at the gates and everyone is just trying to get in. Finally, they open the doors and let us in. You walk up these long steps. Almost like the steps you see Rocky run on in his movies. As you finally get to the top, I almost have tears in my eyes. It’s the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. The field is so perfect with the grass perfectly cut and the smell that you get from the grass just makes you want to stand there and take it in.Another aspect of my needs is met. The beautiful field is something that I will never forget.
As you start to walk around inside the stadium, you begin to smell all the great food that is cooking for the fans. You see all the great merchandise all over the stadium. Jerseys and shirts and posters and hats. Everything a fan would want to buy. As time grows near to kickoff, you begin to walk towards your seats. On the way there I see legends on the wall like Donovan McNabb, Randall Cunningham, Brian Westbrooke, and Brian Dawkins. These are pictures of legends and below all the pictures has a nice quote for each picture. I can remember just standing there staring at all these pictures, remembering all these great players. It was a moment I will never forget.
Walking up the stadium to my seats, all you see is so many different eagles logos all over the walls and just so many nice images. I expected just something simple, but the field really has that special vibe to it that makes it an elite stadium. When I finally reach my seats, the rows are on an angle so no matter how high you are, you can see everything perfect. This was just another thing that makes coming here a pleasure. Another criteria is met. There is really not a bad seat in the house. You can enjoy the game no matter where your seats are. I can’t afford to sit in the lower section but, I always know there is not a bad seat in the house. When you look up, you see all the bright lights shining down. To the side is the huge tron which is show casing all different warm up videos for us to watch and if we ever miss anything on the field, we can use the huge screen to see it.
Lincoln Financial field is a great place. Many memories have been made there for me and I hope there will be many more to come. This might not be the biggest stadium or the most expensive for an NFL franchise but, this place is like heaven for me and many other loyal fans. Everything here is so nice and the people are what make this place great. I feel this stadium meets all my criteria that are needed for a football stadium to be great. The Linc will forever be a second home to me. Fly Eagles Fly!