Flames Football ups the fun with stadium upgrades, new game day festivities » Liberty News

In addition to the new turf, Williams Stadium has other additions including a newly leveled berm in the south end zone that allows for overflow seating. Above the berm are 23 cabins that will offer fans a unique view of the game. (Photo by KJ Play)
Tailgating will be even bigger this fall as Liberty opens Tailgate Town outside of Gate 1. (Photograph by Chase Gyles)

Liberty University is set to host the largest crowds in Williams Stadium history this football season, beginning with Saturday’s matchup with the University of Alabama Birmingham (UAB) Blazers. With the most anticipated home schedule to date, tickets are selling at a record pace and an energetic crowd is expected for the first home game. The 6 pm kickoff will climax months of preparation by Liberty University Athletics to ensure game day festivities are bigger and better than ever this year.

The most recognizable updates are above the south end zone, where a newly graduated berm allows for additional seating. Above the berm are 23 cabins that offer a unique view of the game. Liberty also upgraded seating throughout the stadium: all bleachers on the west side have been replaced with chair-back seats, and all seats on the upper east side are now back bench seats.

“The Williams Stadium projects completed this summer have substantially enhanced an already elite game day experience for the Flames Nation,” said Athletics Director Ian McCaw. “The upgraded seats, new berm and luxurious cabins will be a treat for our fans. Williams Stadium has added modern amenities that rival the best college football venues in America.”

The energetic atmosphere of game time will be enhanced by a new pre-game event this year, Tailgate Town, which Liberty hopes will become a tradition. Fans can reserve a space by the walkway leading to Gate 1, complete with a tent, tables, chairs and a parking pass. Tailgate Town will open at 8am and close one hour after each game ends. (Each gazebo comes with a personalized yard sign with family or company name.)

The Flames Fan Fest pregame event has become a favorite with families. It is free and open to all ticket holders. (Photo by KJ Play)

Flames Club members can also participate in a new designated area, the relevant law tracking lot, located next to the LaHaye Ice Center. Each parking pass comes with additional tailgate space.

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“As we’ve grown as a program, we know we want to grow our tailgating culture on campus,” said Drew Boykin (’18), director of annual giving for the Flames Club. “We want to make sure that no matter what area of ​​campus you’re in, there are tents out the back door and people hanging out before the game, creating a really good atmosphere for game day.”

The fun will continue with the Flames Fan Fest (presented by Motor World), a pregame family favorite, at 3:30 pm at Liberty University’s indoor practice facility. Families can play lawn games and children can enjoy inflatables. The event is free and

open to all ticket holders. As part of a new pre-game ritual, the Flames Football team will walk through Fan Fest when they arrive at Williams Stadium approximately two hours before game time. Also for the first time, Fan Fest participants will be entertained by the Spirit of the Mountain Marching Band before the band takes the field for their pregame performance and national anthem 20 minutes before kickoff. Additionally, Flames Club members can purchase a pre-game meal. Festivities conclude 30 minutes prior to game time. (For more information, call the Flames Club at (434) 582-2582).

“In the fall, you have six Saturdays to have college football on your campus,” Boykin said. “We have to make the most of them. We want to make sure it’s an all-day event. We want this to be a full day where friends and family come and support the team.”

Flames head coach Hugh Freeze signs a young fan’s jersey at Fan Appreciation Day last month (Photo by Eva Soderstrom)

Fans will also enjoy new concession offers during the game. A new Food Truck Alley will be located behind the west side of the stadium and will feature some of Lynchburg’s most beloved food trucks, including County Smoak, Nomad Coffee and Clarkboys Kettle Corn.

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For the first four Flames games, the Flames Club will give away exciting giveaways, including Flames 2022 football schedule magnets, Head Coach Hugh Freeze bobbleheads, Liberty flags and Alpine hats.

“Liberty has done a great job of organizing this for our fans and alumni to come and just have a fun, Christ-centered, family day,” said Robert Goodman, associate athletic director for sales promotions and athletics. “I think our fans will see great improvements to the stadium that everyone will enjoy this season.”

The Flames are coming off a thrilling fourth-overtime win over Southern Miss last weekend, building momentum for Saturday’s home opener and looking ahead to host Akron (Sept. 24), Gardner Webb (Oct. 15) , BYU (October 22), Virginia Tech (November 19) and New Mexico State (November 26).

In Freeze’s fourth year as the team’s wing general, the Flames will be looking to improve on their 8-5 record from 2021, with their fans propelling them to a possible fourth consecutive appearance in a bowl game this season.

To accommodate the increased attendance and influx of game day traffic on campus, Liberty has organized one-way entry and exit plans for each parking lot. (View map and parking information). All game parking passes are now digital. For more information on game day, visit LibertyFlames.com.

Fans on the west side of the stadium will enjoy the addition of bucket seats. (Photo by KJ Play)

(Photograph by Chase Gyles)

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