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SBD/September 2, 2014/Facilities
Texas Two Step: Baylor, Houston Open Up New Football Stadiums To Good Reviews
Published September 2, 2014
ON THE GUEST LIST: In Dallas, Kevin Sherrington noted Texas Gov. Rick Perry and U.S. Sens. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) also attended the game to "celebrate one of the prettiest little gems in college football" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 9/1). In Texas, Regina Dennis noted while plans for public events at McLane Stadium "continue to take shape, the facility quickly has become a destination spot for private gatherings and celebrations." More than 50 private events "have been booked at the stadium’s private Baylor Club, managed by operator ClubCorp." The club is "spread across four floors and features a grand ballroom and nine suite and lounge spaces that can accommodate small meetings, galas and parties." Baylor Club membership sales "have been double the original projections," as about 1,050 people "have purchased memberships, which provide access to the private dining service and members-only gatherings like 'victory brunches' after home games, holiday-themed dinners and basketball watch parties." Memberships "cost between $25 and $125 per month" (WACO TRIBUNE-HERALD, 9/1). Also in Texas, J.B. Smith noted the "ambition to make McLane Stadium a 'community event center' with year-round entertainment attractions" will cost Baylor "more than $450,000 in subsidies in the first year." The school is "leasing the stadium on non-game days to the newly created Baylor-Waco Stadium Authority, which is contracting with the venue manager SMG to put on private and public events, such as weddings, tractor pulls, cookoffs, high school games and big concerts" (WACO TRIBUNE-HERALD, 8/30).
COUGAR TOWN: In Houston, Jerome Solomon noted a crowd of 40,755 on Friday turned out to see Houston open the school's new $120M TDECU Stadium, a venue that "to some is priceless." UH lost to UTSA 27-7, but it still was a "wondrous evening" and a "huge day for the university." This is the "latest indicator that UH is moving into the big time" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 8/30).
WHAT IT BOILS DOWN TO: In Indiana, Sam King noted the new tailgate patio at Purdue's Ross-Ade Stadium "earned instant positive reviews." Gone are the "bleachers, replaced by patio tables and chairs and, more importantly, fans in an area that had become desolate in recent seasons." The $500,000 upgrade "could be just the first step in improving the south end zone" (Lafayette JOURNAL & COURIER, 8/31).