Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City is one of the true bucket list stadiums in the NFL. Opened in 1978, it seats over 76,000 rabid Chiefs fans every other Sunday in the fall and it is a venue which any true sports fan must visit at some point in their life time. This open air stadium remains the fifth biggest by seating capacity in the NFL, despite being located in one of the smaller market cities. This small town, pro sports feel is one of the aspects which makes Arrowhead unique from some of the other steel and concrete corporate monstrosities in the league.
Despite the decades old construction Arrowhead Stadium has all the modern amenities and touches you would expect from a world class sporting venue. This is because of a facelift which was given to the structure starting in 2007 at a cost of $375 million. This money was funded in part by the city and in part by the Hunt family who have owned the Chiefs ever since the franchise was moved to Kansas City from Dallas in 1963. The reconstruction of the stadium included the stunningly cool Chiefs Hall of Honor on the ground level of the stadium which is a museum quality exhibit featuring memorabilia and information on all the Chiefs players and team accomplishments throughout the years.
Graphic via vagabondsummer
One of the greatest parts of catching a game at Arrowhead Stadium has nothing to do with the building or team and everything to do with the parking lot. Kansas City is known for having some of the best barbeque food in the nation and nobody in the NFL tailgates as hard and as hungry as Chiefs fans. Pounds upon pounds of pork butt, beef brisket and plain old hamburgers are smoked and grilled on game day, providing a feast both pre and post-game. Such is the nature of the folks in the Midwest that it is not unheard of at all to wander the parking lot, meeting new groups of people and settling in to eat with them and talk football before heading into the stadium. Many of these people will be in the parking lot before dawn to fire up their smokers and give Arrowhead its distinct, and delicious, smell.
The famed “Sea of Red” which takes over Arrowhead Stadium when the Chiefs play doesn’t only make for an excellent photograph from above. The way the stadium is designed means that even the nosebleed section of the stadium feels close to the action. Arrowhead is one of the steepest stadiums you will ever encounter and that design choice helps to funnel the noise from the fans back down to the field. The stadium has long been known as one of the loudest in the NFL, a fact confirmed on September 29, 2014 when on a Monday Night Football game against the New England Patriots the crowd noise peaked at 142.2 decibels. This is a Guinness World Record as the loudest noise ever recorded in a stadium. That is louder than being 100 feet away from a jet engine.
Graphic via kcchiefs