Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Inexpensive Memories

I remember when the Patriots were terrible. Instead of our now expected double digits in the wins column, it was always double digits in the losses column. Tickets were cheap and available and my Dad and I would make the trek to the old Foxboro Stadium.

I remember walking into the stadium wearing a dark blue Drew Bledsoe jersey under my puffy Patriots winter jacket and taking in the scene with wide blue eyes. At that moment all I could think was that I wanted to come every Sunday.

My Dad and I would sit on the metal bleachers in the end zone and eat Papa John's pizza and peanuts. Because the Pats were on the bottom of the NFL barrel and because of their annual loser status, I got to root for my favorite team in the sticky seats of Foxboro.

Nothing is better than seeing the thing that you love live and in person. Whether it is a play, concert or sporting event, there is something about seeing something you are passionate about play out in front of your eyes. This is especially important for children and the times that I spent with my dad within the walls of that stadium are times that I will never forget. has reported that the Patriots will be raising ticket prices next year. Here are the new prices according to the press release and the post on Mike Reiss’ blog on, “Reiss’s Pieces,”

Lower Level Sideline -- $169
Lower Level Corner/End Zone -- $117
Mezzanine Level Corner/End Zone -- $117
Upper Level Sideline -- $89
Upper Level Corner (Rows 1-7) -- $89
Upper Level Corner (Rows 8-26) -- $65
Standing Room -- $49

I literally gasped when I saw the new prices. I can’t imagine having parents spending 100 dollars on two STANDING ROOM tickets. I went to a game last year with my Dad for my birthday and it will probably be the last game I go to for some time.

It kills me to think that some kids will have to miss out on what I got to experience so many times when I was small. Sports are a business and I know that. More people want to go see a good team play than a team where a loss is almost guaranteed. It just hurts me to think that the thousands of little Pats fans may not get the chance to see their role models hit the field because of unbelievably high ticket prices.

I would never want the Pats to do badly and it may never go back to the way it used to be when rows of empty seats could be found cluttering the stadium. But I do know that I much rather see the stands filled with parents and kids, old friends and long time fans all clad in Pats gear, then rows of suits and ties. Hey, maybe I’m cynical, but those suits won’t be coming when the Pats are no longer the cream of the crop.

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