STORRS, Conn. - The UConn football team opens the 2016 season on Thursday, September 1 when it plays host to Maine at Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field. Fans attending games this season at the stadium will notice some exciting game day experience changes.
"It's very important for all our fans who attend football games at Pratt & Whitney Stadium to have a positive and fun experience," said UConn Director of Athletics David Benedict. "We have worked very hard to make changes this year that will be of benefit to all fans -- adults, families and UConn students. We want people to come to games, enjoy the tailgating, be in their seats before kickoff and celebrate with our team. Then, we want them to come back for the next game and do it all over again!"
UConn season tickets, mini-plans and single-game tickets are now on sale at UConnTickets.com. Fans can purchase a special $15 ticket in the reserved section for the Maine opener.
Here's a look at the exciting changes for 2016!
CONCESSION PRICE REDUCTION
Fans can purchase a Rent Dog (traditional hot dog) or bottled water for only $3 each, a price reduction of $2 from previous seasons. Families of four can now eat on game day for less than $25. Visit any of the designated concession stands to take advantage of these new prices.
Season Parking Tag Holders Can Park Next To Their Friends/Family During Season Ticket Holder Hour Parking (Five Hours Before Kick)
Exclusively for season parking tag holders -- during the first hour of season ticket holder tailgating (five hours prior to kickoff), fans will be permitted to park anywhere in select lots so friends and family can easily tailgate together.
During this early access hour, fans will be asked to select their preferred parking spot based on proximity to the stadium and available space near their space for friends and family to join.
New Fan Fest location featuring the UConn Dairy Bar Ice Cream Truck
Fan Fest is moving closer to the action this season! The new Fan Fest area will be located between the Blue and Grey lots (along the Husky Walk route). With a larger footprint and even more attractions (including inflatables, tailgating games, sponsor giveaways, and autograph sessions with some of your favorite UConn players), the new Fan Fest is a must-see on game days. This season fans are in for a treat as the UConn Dairy Bar Ice Cream Truck will roll into Fan Fest for every game!
Trash Bag Stations Throughout Parking Lots
In an effort to keep the facility as clean as possible, there will be complimentary trash bag stations around the parking lots. Fans are encouraged to visit any of these stations on game day and are asked to bring all trash to an appropriate receptacle OR leave the bag next to their vehicle upon exit.
New pregame format including live look-ins from around the country and new traditions/special guests
This season there will be several new features and traditions of pregame, including "Live Look-ins" (videoboard cut-ins to other college football action around the country), a new pregame UConn Marching Band tradition "Welcome to the Dog House" and a few pregame special guests on-field.
EASIER TO GET AROUND/EASIER TO GET IN
Additional And Updated Signage
Additional signage has been added to help fans navigate their way to their designated parking area. Additionally, all existing signage has been updated and adjusted to make parking directions more clear and visible during your entry.
Directories And Way Finding
To assist fans looking for ticket information, stadium entry points and identifying lot colors, directories have been installed in several locations around stadium parking lots. Additionally, other signage has been installed to assist with navigating lots by identifying entries and exits of lots.
Visibly Marked "Bag/No Bag" Entrances
At each gate this season, visibly marked bag/no bag lines will help expedite entry on game days. For a reminder about our bag policy, please visit www.UConnHuskies.com/bagpolicy
Game Day Ambassadors
At Every Gate Fans will greeted by new Game Day Ambassadors as they make their way through the stadium gates. These individuals will be happy to assist in finding seats, locating landmarks around the facility and answering questions about game day. Fans should feel free to connect with these individuals and discuss how their game day experience has been. Feedback is greatly appreciated and helps make game day better for every one of our fans.
Facility Cleanliness and Restroom Attendants
Fans will notice a more concerted effort to maintain facility cleanliness this season from parking lots, stadium seating and restrooms.
Dedicated Change To Promote Game Atmosphere
Fan energy and noise is what it is about this season. Fans will notice changes to our in-game format including less commercial content, new team/fan content, high-energy music and more.
Drumline Every Third Quarter Break
The always-popular UConn Marching Band Drumline will be performing during every third quarter break and will signal the start of the fourth quarter.
The Return Of "Sandstorm"
Longtime UConn football fans know that when "Sandstorm" comes over the speakers, it means it is time to get up and get loud before the fourth quarter gets underway.
Victory Bell Now On The Concourse
The Victory Bell -- a tradition that dates back to Memorial Stadium in Storrs -- has a new location at Pratt & Whitney Stadium this season. It will be moved from the field and closer to the fans -- on the concourse behind the UConn Marching Band. Every ring of the bell after a score signals one more point for the Huskies.
New Scoreboard And Ribbon Board Formats
Game days will feature an all new look on the scoreboard and ribbon boards. From kickoff to the final whistle, fans will always be able to see the score, down, distance and game stats on the scoreboard. The ribbon boards will feature a game clock, down, distance and out-of-town scores throughout the game.
This season we want all of our Husky fans to join is in our postgame tradition. Immediately following the final whistle, the team will join the UConn Marching Band in singing the alma mater "Old Connecticut" before heading to the locker-room. Stick around and sing it loud with the Huskies!
Free Bus Transportation
There will be free bus transportation to and from games all season courtesy of SUBOG (Student Union Board of Governors). Students can pick up a bus ticket any time in the week leading up to the game from the student information desk in the Student Union. F
Free Ticket To The Maine Game For All UConn Freshman
During WOW Weekend and the first week of school, all incoming freshman can pick up a complimentary ticket to the season-opener vs. Maine on Thurs., Sept. 1. For freshman who have already purchased season tickets, an additional ticket to Maine can be picked up during the first week of school.
Prorated Freshmen Season Ticket Price For The Remainder Of The Season
Freshmen interested in obtaining season tickets for the remainder of the year can purchase a prorated season ticket package for only $42 -- $7 per game. Students can purchase this season package any time before the Virginia game on Saturday. Sept. 17.
Newly-Designed Student Tailgating Lot
In an effort to enhance game day for students who prefer to drive themselves to the stadium, a new student-only parking lot has been created. Located adjacent to the student bus area, UConn students can now park in a student-designated lot for only $10 per game (a $5 savings off game day parking). Students who take advantage of this lot will note its location is significantly closer to the stadium -- compared to game day parking, is a shorter walk to the student entrance (Gate C) and will have a unique student-centric tailgating atmosphere.
Student Tailgate For Maine Game, Including Complimentary Food And Beverages
UConn students are invited to attend a free BBQ in the new student tailgate lot prior to the Maine game - featuring Bear's Smokehouse Barbeque.
New Student Loyalty Platform -- Husky Trax
This season, students can swipe their ID at the marketing kiosk at Gate C during every home game to collect points and earn rewards. Student loyalty rewards will be awarded game-by-game and over the course of the season.