Arrowhead Stadium – Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs were one of the original members of the AFL, although they spent the first two years of their existence as the Dallas Texans. They moved to Kansas City in 1963 and were one of the most successful franchises in the AFL, playing in both Super Bowls I and IV, winning their one and only Super Bowl on their second attempt.
The original home of the Chiefs in Kansas City was the old Municipal Stadium, where they spent their first nine seasons. In 1972, they moved into the brand new Arrowhead Stadium located in the Truman Sports Complex alongside the Kansas City Royals’ Kauffman Stadium. Its seating capacity of 77,000 makes it the largest sports facility in the state, based on capacity.
Food & Beverage 4
Like most NFL stadiums, Arrowhead serves up your typical sports fare of hot dogs, nachos, hamburgers and popcorn. But this is Kansas City, so let’s focus on what the city is known for… barbeque! The Chiefs have created BBQ Alley featuring food from KC’s top BBQ restaurants. Smoke Brewing offers up its deep-fried burnt ends; Plowboys BBQ presents its pulled pork sandwich and The Little Pig features its BBQ Sundae (BBQ beans topped with coleslaw, pulled pork and a pickle wedge). Finally, Dickey’s Barbeque Pit serves up chopped brisket, half pound of rack ribs and Frito Pie.
On the beverage front, Arrowhead serves Coca-Cola brand sodas. Adult beverages are available at the Craft Corners or Kansas City Cocktail Company locations located throughout the stadium.
Arrowhead Stadium has one of the best game day atmospheres in NFL football. The team has done a great job in keeping the stadium as competitive as possible with the newer stadiums in the league. A $400 million renovation in 2010 added many of the extras today’s fans have come to expect as a part of their game day experience. A number of luxury seating areas were created, and the electronics package was upgraded with LED message ribbons and football shaped HD video boards at each end of the stadium. The Chiefs play in the wide open Western Division of the AFC and have done very well under Coach Andy Reid in recent seasons. As a result, the stands are full every Sunday in the fall.
Several legendary NFL athletes had their career years while playing in Arrowhead Stadium. They include Len Dawson, Willie Lanier, Derrick Thomas, Nick Lowery, Tony Gonzalez, Priest Holmes, Alex Smith and Emmitt Thomas. Hall of Fame coaches Marv Levy and Hank Stram also paced its sidelines. All of these individuals are immortalized in the Chiefs Hall of Honor found on the concourse level. The Hall is an interactive space recalling the greatest plays and players in Chiefs history and is well worth a visit.
Arrowhead Stadium is located in a suburb of Kansas City and does not offer much in the way of dining options or attractions in the immediate area of the stadium. Downtown Kansas City is just 15 minutes away and offers a wide variety of restaurants and tourist attractions.
Kansas City offers some of the finest restaurants in the Midwest. Arthur Bryant’s Barbeque has been around for decades and is known as the best… in a town known for its BBQ. Boulevard Brewing Company is an outstanding choice for sampling the craft beers of the region.
One of the real treasures located in Kansas City is the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. It provides a fascinating look at the teams, players and leagues that existed before Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier. Cross Country Plaza offers just about everything a visitor could ask for in Kansas City… great architecture, more than 180 shops, galleries, restaurants and nightlife. If you are in town for a game after Thanksgiving the nightly Holiday Lights are spectacular.
There are two hotels, the Four Points Sheraton-KC Sports Complex and the Drury Inn and Suites-Stadiums, located within walking distance of both Arrowhead Stadium and Kauffman Stadium.
Simply stated… the Chief fans are the most loyal and the loudest fans in the AFC. They never give up, no matter how many times their hearts have been broken by a playoff loss or how brutal the late November and early January weather is. They are certifiably loud, as the Guinness Book of World Records ranked Arrowhead Stadium as the loudest stadium in the world at an ear shattering 142.2 decibels.
The fans start to charge their energy levels at the Ford Fan Experience. This area provides pre-game entertainment, the Bud Light Beer Garden, a performance by the Chiefs cheerleaders and appearances by Warpaint the Pony and KC Wolf. If that is not enough, the tailgating scene in Kansas City is top rate due to the city’s love affair with its own style of barbeque.
The Chief fans crank it up early, as they react to the drumbeat from a Chiefs icon calling them to war. During the National anthem, they change the last words of the refrain to the “land of the CHIEFS!!!” They do not let up after that as they follow the lead of the Chiefs cheerleaders and the team mascot, K.C. Wolf. The attire of a Chiefs fan is nearly as loud as the volume, as the stands are a sea of red and gold.
When the Chiefs ownership was scouting a place to build their stadium, no land met their needs within the Kansas City limits. Land was identified in suburban Jackson County near the I-70/I-435 interchange that offered enough room for both the baseball and football stadiums. Being close to this interchange offers two major routes to get to the game. There is plenty of parking surrounding the stadiums, but it comes at a steep price. For those who want to avoid the high cost of parking at the stadium, the Kansas City Area Transit Authority offers bus service directly to Arrowhead Stadium. Take Route #47 (Broadway Line) to the stadium. For schedule information go to www.ridekc.org.
Once at the stadium accessibility is excellent. There are seven major entry gates at Arrowhead and gates open two hours prior to the game. The concourses at the stadium were widened as a part of the 2010 renovations and the number of restrooms and concessions areas were increased at the same time.
Return on Investment 3
The success of the Chiefs franchise comes at a high cost, as the face value of tickets is $35-$200. However, once the season is in full swing the tickets escalate to $500 or more due to high demand. Parking at the Truman Sports Complex is $35 for a pre-paid space, or $60 cash if purchased on game day.
One credit must go to the fans in Kansas City for holding the title of loudest stadium.
Arrowhead Stadium is one of only four stadiums in the NFL that does not have a corporate name.
In addition to the Chiefs games, Arrowhead Stadium has played host to five Big XII Championship games, the annual Border Showdown game (Kansas Jayhawks/Missouri Tigers) and MLS Soccer from 1996-2007.
Despite being one of the oldest stadiums in the NFL, Arrowhead Stadium has stood the test of time well. It keeps reinventing itself by adding such amenities as the Hall of Honor, premium seating locations and a concessions menu featuring BBQ from some of Kansas City’s finest restaurants. They also have one of the most loyal, and officially the loudest, fan base in the NFL, if not the world.
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Food and Drink Recommendations
Holiday Inn Kansas City
9103 East 39th St
Kansas City, MO 64133
Four Points by Sheraton
4011 Blue Ridge Cutoff
Kansas City, MO 64133
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Outside of prices being on the high-end, there isn’t anything not to like when attending a game here. There is a fabulous atmosphere, passionate fans, a great staff, and a world-class city with plenty to do just down the road. If you are a fan of the NFL, make it a point to attend a Chiefs game at Arrowhead Stadium it will not disappoint.