Jerry World to me was this mythical place full of stars and oversized jumbotrons. Up until this point, the nicest and newest football stadium I’d been to was Mile High in Denver, so it didn’t have a ton to compete with, but it blew away even my wildest expectations. First off, the sheer size is astounding. But better is the beauty of it. The windows, video boards, structures around the stadium, and jumbotrons all contribute to an environment where it feels like wherever you look, there’s a cool new view you hadn’t noticed before. Jerry did it right for sure.
The “seats” I got for this game is my biggest sports trip planning regret to date. Tickets for the game on all secondary market sites were ridiculous- well over $200 for a seat in the very highest 6th section up from the field. That high, I figured you would probably end up watching the Jumbotron more than the field itself, and I convinced myself that it wasn’t worth it. So instead, I went for Standing Room Only tickets for $70 each. Which might have worked out alright if I’d done a little bit more research. There are some great standing room spots to watch the game. Unfortunately, only about half of the people who buy standing room tickets fit into those spots, and most people know apparently that they have to get there right when the gates open to stake a claim on those spots. We clearly didn’t get there right when the gates opened and instead were forced to stand in an atrium type section behind all the standing room folks who had planned properly. You know how I was worried about watching the Jumbotrons more than the field in the upper level section seats? Well here we had no shot of getting a glimpse of the field, so we only watched the Jumbotron.
Add in the fact that I thought it would be “cute” to wear a Ravens shirt (who they were playing) while Joel wore a Cowboys shirt, resulting in some drunk dude with a kid in a baby bjorn on his chest harassing me anytime the Cowboys did anything good, and I would say that this game was slightly less than a good time. I don’t regret going, but next time I will splurge and get us seats, no matter where they are. Even if we had gotten there early enough for good standing room spots, people crowd you and try to jump into your spot first chance they get! I would have been worried to go to the bathroom or grab some food! In some situations it might be worth it (Superbowl or World Series games come to mind) but otherwise, I’d personally try any other option.
The Cowboys dominated and the environment was really cool- as much as I hate to admit it, they are America’s team if they can sell out that humongous stadium and have so many people engaged in the game. Afterwards when we were walking back to our car, fans kept yelling at each other “see you in Houston!” (where the Superbowl was) which was rather delusional, but they were clearly enjoying being good again. I like Dak Prescott’s story, so while I will never root for the Cowboys, I could at least appreciate them having a good season. And also laugh when they inevitably lose in the playoffs and I think about all the jerks who gave me crap for my Ravens shirt. I’ve learned- never wear an opposing team’s shirt to an NFL game unless you actually care about them.
As expected in a stadium of that magnitude, there is a wide variety of food options. I think we opted for some pizza to begin with and fries later. We also got some souvenir cups, which must have been a better deal because I can’t imagine another scenario where we’d willingly pay extra for cups that we have to figure out how to get home unless they were from a team we actually liked. Overall, it was pretty similar to a lot of other stadium eats- decent but expensive.
We parked about a mile away from the stadium on one of the major streets nearby. It was lined with businesses with tiny parking lots that they sold spots in. Our lot was some sort of dentist office I believe.
On our walk to the stadium, one gentleman reminded me that I wasn’t going to be able to bring my purse in. I knew that but had totally spaced- NFL stadiums across the board are strict with not allowing purses in. I was extremely thankful to the man for reminding me- it sucked walking back a few blocks, but walking back from the gate would have been way worse. I always see disgruntled men walking in the wrong direction with purses at games, and I know that they’re the husbands of women who have overlooked the rule, just like I almost did. Ladies, leave the purses.
Overall, this was a pretty great trip- it was great to see Jordy, Dallas in now one of my favorite cities, met some awesome people, and we got to go to our first college football games together. And, most importantly, Joel finished all of his homework assignments for his Masters, so I didn’t feel like a total jerk for planning a trip while he was going through that!
Just a couple of sports fans touring the world, one stadium at a time.