Five Star Stadium – Mercer Bears
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Five Star Stadium, which is also called the Tony and Nancy Moye Football and Lacrosse Complex, is one of the newer Division I football stadiums in the country, as it opened in 2013.
The stadium is home of the Mercer football team, which is the only Division I team in Georgia that is a private school. Mercer actually started playing football in 1892, but the sport was dropped in 1941 during World War II, and it was never resumed until 2013.
With the return of football came a new stadium, which holds 10,000 fans. Over 12,000 fans came to support the team in the season opener in August 2013.
Next to the stadium lies Drake Field House, the William H. Anderson Family Field and the Marshall and Jane Butler Family Plaza.
Overall, Five Star Stadium is a great place to watch college football on the FCS level. The Bears are fun to watch, the food is very affordable and access is easy to get in and out of the stadium. The people in Macon, Georgia are glad to have Mercer football back, and so am I.
Food & Beverage 4
One of the good things about Five Star Stadium is that the food is relatively cheap. You can get a hot dog, chips, candy or soda for $3-$5 each. With the stadium seating only 10,000 fans, there are only four concession stands, and that could make for long lines.
There is also a place where you can get slices of Papa John’s Pizza, which cost $3. And if you really don’t want to eat what’s at the concession stands, fans can eat at the University Center before heading into the stadium. There is a Chick-fil-A and a Subway located in the University Center, which has all the favorite foods.
Five Star Stadium is located in the heart of Mercer’s campus, and for a smaller private school that is trying to make some noise in Georgia, it’s a great place to take in a football game, especially on a Saturday night.
There isn’t much of a skyline because the University is located right off of I-75. But the way the stadium is built, it is much like a big high school football stadium. That is not a bad thing, because high school football is really big in Georgia.
The marching band is lively and the fans are really into every aspect of the game. The scoreboard is not the biggest in the world, but it is a good size for that stadium.
With the stadium being a bit smaller, there really isn’t a bad seat in the house. No matter where you sit, you will never miss part of the action, which can’t be said about some of the bigger stadiums at FBS schools.
Macon is the fourth-largest city in Georgia, so there’s plenty to do in the area.
Right off of campus is the Mercer Village, where many good restaurants are located, like Ingleside Village Pizza and Francar’s, which serves wings.
If you want to venture a little more and not just eat, the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame is a short drive away from Mercer. This is a good place to learn the history of college and professional sports in Georgia. Not too far from the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame is the Big House Museum, which pays tribute to the Allman Brothers.
Walking to and from the stadium is very safe. The campus is located in a safe area, so fans do not have to be worried about being harassed.
When I was at the game, I was amazed how many fans came out to support the Bears. They were all tailgating and dressed in the school colors. It reminded me of a smaller version of what you would see in Athens, Georgia.
There weren’t any certain chants or traditions that I saw, but it will take time for those to develop. There also weren’t too many visiting fans, because Mercer was playing a smaller school in Florida. If the fans keep coming, more traditions will develop as the years go by.
The stadium is located right off of I-75 in Macon, so access is quite easy.
There are plenty of parking options for fans around campus, and it won’t cost you more than $10 to park your car. Traffic is not a problem when you are trying to exit the stadium. Unlike the other Division I schools in the state, getting to the stadium, parking and leaving the stadium is very easy, and that will make fans want to return.
Return on Investment 5
If you want to take in a Division I college football game and spend less than $100 on tickets, parking and food for a family of four, then Mercer is the place to be.
There is always a good place to sit and you get to see an upstart team with a lot of talent. It’s not the level of play that you would see in Athens or Atlanta, but it’s just as much fun, because the Bears are a good team that has a lot of potential to be great moving forward. Going to Five Star Stadium is well worth the price.
When you go to a Mercer game, make sure you grab a program. They are only $5, and you will find more than enough information on the game, as well as the history of the program.
There are plenty of staff members all over the stadium to help you find your seat and make sure you are having a good time at the game. That’s a refreshing sight, because that isn’t the case with most colleges in the area.
If you are not from the area and don’t want to drive home, there is a Hilton Garden Inn right next to the University. This is also a great place to stay if you want to spend the weekend and do some sight-seeing in Macon.
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