Beaver Stadium, to many, is the first thought that comes to mind when someone mentions Penn State.
The football team is, after all, the flag-bearer for the university, and play their games at Beaver Stadium. A trip for a fall football game in central Pennsylvania is for many a pilgrimage, a rite, something to share with one’s children and pass on to future generations.
I love Beaver Stadium. Its size. Its atmosphere. Its rickety, exposed construction that makes it feel as if a toddler cobbled something together and their architect parents went “yup, that’s what a stadium should look like” and made it so.
But let’s be honest - the Beav could use a few upgrades. So MAQB asks - what changes would you make to Beaver Stadium?
For me, I can think of a few things.
First, admissions. The student gate in particular is a giant mess, and has more than once led to the student section being partially empty at kickoff. Some of that has to do with the students getting there late, but some of it has to do with how tickets are processed, and how long it takes to get through the gate. I’m not sure what needs to change, but that is something I would address.
Second, concessions. I’m not expecting filet mignon wrapped in bacon with a lobster tail on the side, but if a chicken finger basket is the only thing that anyone speaks of with any fondness when it comes to in-stadium food, you’re doing something wrong. Many of the concession stands look like they were built in the 50s, and frankly need to be modernized. Which leads me to point #3.
Third, aesthetics. Again, the rattletrap nature of Beaver Stadium is part of the appeal. But I think it could stand some modernization and beautification. I honestly liked the proposal put forth by Sandy Barbour, which showed wrapping the stadium in a brick facade, while leaving some of the structural elements exposed.
That is straight up pretty. Now, will it ever get built? Who knows. But a modernization of the aesthetics, as well as improvements to access and the concourses would do wonders for an aging stadium.
Fourth, alcohol. This ties into the concessions, but thought it could stand its own note. I’m all for alcohol sales in the stadium. First, if your plan is to get hammered and go to the game, the lack of alcohol til now has not been an impediment. Second, people smuggle booze in to keep the party going - why not instead turn a profit off of it? There are other examples around the country of college stadiums selling alcohol, so I see no reason Penn State couldn’t do the same.
What say you, dear reader? What would you change about our beloved stadium?