Opening night plans

DominicJD

New Member
Jul 23, 2005
23
Vienna, VA
Would love to hear what everyone's plans are for opening night. I decided to splurge this year and will be flying in to attend the game with the missus. Was able to score a room onsite, and am curious about the best pre-game activities, tailgates, etc. Have heard mixed reviews of Smerlas' tailgate party, so not sure about that one. What are you plans and / or recommendations on how to best enjoy opening night?
 

Fisks Of Fury

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Jul 16, 2005
1,558
Plaistow, NH
My 2 cents...

I'll be doing what I do almost every game. Arriving early with a buddy (who happens to be from ESPN), and parking at the very front of P11 across from the stadium. Setting up for some drinking (I've got a 12 pack and some Macallan 18) and grilling, and hanging out with the various other folks who end up parked around us. In my experience, you can find fun, friendly people almost everywhere doing some excellent tailgating. We've been doing this for most home games for the past 9 years or so. Lots "officially" open at 3:30 tomorrow, so some of them will likely open a little earlier than that, and people WILL be lined up to get in. There will almost certainly be a rush of folks arriving as the lots open, and then a bigger rush of folks arriving between 5-6, which seems standard for a weeknight game. If you get there (by car) any time after 6:30, traffic will suck. CBS Scene can certainly be fun pregame, and we've also had a good time with the folks at the "Redneck Bar" (Toby Keith's) a few times too. In my opinion, there's no reason to go into the stadium TOO early, except to beat the gate crowds. Though I'm curious as to what precisely they're planning to do with these Bud Light light-up cups they're putting at every seat tomorrow, and I won't be missing any of the pregame stuff for THIS game for sure.

Depending on how deep into the bag I get tailgating, I might head in early to try and get Troy Brown's autograph (7-8) in Lot 4 behind the Proshop.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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Jan 2, 2006
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Well, I know you all will be super jealous - but, I'll be watching at home, on the couch - in southern NJ.

Extremely jealous of all you lucky ticket holders.
 

pappymojo

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Jul 28, 2010
6,758
Dominic, where are you staying? In Boston or closer to the stadium?

Theres some stuff going on in boston durine the day tomorrow. Rumors that Jon Bon Jovi may play some music at christopher columbus park. That kind of shit.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

Homeland Security
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Dec 4, 2005
19,615
Portsmouth, NH
Well, I know you all will be super jealous - but, I'll be watching at home, on the couch - in southern NJ.

Extremely jealous of all you lucky ticket holders.
I'll be doing the same and not even remotely jealous of those dealing with the shit show. Im sure it'll be great to experience, but I'm far beyond wanting to deal with the madness of a game at Foxboro, let alone one like this. I don't even want to be in a bar. I'd rather be on my couch and be able to pay attention.
 

Ralphwiggum

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Jun 27, 2012
9,889
Needham, MA
Dude. Being able to be there in person in Foxboro for the playoff games last year and two years ago has been unbelievably great. Why are you dead inside?
 

NortheasternPJ

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Nov 16, 2004
19,730
I'll be doing the same and not even remotely jealous of those dealing with the shit show. Im sure it'll be great to experience, but I'm far beyond wanting to deal with the madness of a game at Foxboro, let alone one like this. I don't even want to be in a bar. I'd rather be on my couch and be able to pay attention.
I hear this a lot but it's really not that hectic if you can get down there early. We'll leave Reading, MA around 2:30, be down there in about 45 min with little traffic and have a few hours to hang out grill etc. before walking in. If you don't dick around at the end of the game, it's really not even that bad getting out unless you park in the stadium lot, if you do that then you're asking for it.

If you can't leave before 3pm though, that's a whole other story. Leaving at like 4 for this is absolutely brutal.

I've stated many times on here for most night games I'm no longer going. It's just not worth being so tired the next day, but for this and playoffs? All day. (or night in this case)
 

Saints Rest

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Though I'm curious as to what precisely they're planning to do with these Bud Light light-up cups they're putting at every seat tomorrow, and I won't be missing any of the pregame stuff for THIS game for sure.
.
My guess is that those light up cups are all connected via a wireless network so they can be programmed, probably using pixel-mapping, for some light show that may look far cooler on camera, especially via the blimp, than in person.
 

tims4wins

PN23's replacement
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Jul 15, 2005
38,891
Hingham, MA
I hear this a lot but it's really not that hectic if you can get down there early. We'll leave Reading, MA around 2:30, be down there in about 45 min with little traffic and have a few hours to hang out grill etc. before walking in. If you don't dick around at the end of the game, it's really not even that bad getting out unless you park in the stadium lot, if you do that then you're asking for it.

If you can't leave before 3pm though, that's a whole other story. Leaving at like 4 for this is absolutely brutal.

I've stated many times on here for most night games I'm no longer going. It's just not worth being so tired the next day, but for this and playoffs? All day. (or night in this case)
This is why I love TNF, to be honest. Much easier to deal with tired Fridays since the weekend is looming, as opposed to starting off your week exhausted after SNF or MNF
 

Fisks Of Fury

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Jul 16, 2005
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Plaistow, NH
My guess is that those light up cups are all connected via a wireless network so they can be programmed, probably using pixel-mapping, for some light show that may look far cooler on camera, especially via the blimp, than in person.
Right. I figure they'll do something during the opening ceremonies, like a wacky light show as you suggest, as well as lighting up after every touchdown, as they said they'd do. But the email I got about gameday specifically says "Must be 21+ to participate." Is it as simple as them not being legally able to encourage kids to hold up a Bud Light cup? Are they going to be offering a free round of Bud Light to everyone (Ha!) Are the cups going to be Wifi enabled? Bluetooth? NFC?

I'll admit I'm curious to see what they do... but I don't REALLY care in the grand scheme of the game and the day. I'm just so fucking glad football is back.
 

Fisks Of Fury

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Jul 16, 2005
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Plaistow, NH
I'll be doing the same and not even remotely jealous of those dealing with the shit show. Im sure it'll be great to experience, but I'm far beyond wanting to deal with the madness of a game at Foxboro, let alone one like this. I don't even want to be in a bar. I'd rather be on my couch and be able to pay attention.
I can absolutely understand feeling this way. I've been a season ticket holder since 2002, and had access to almost full season tickets for years before that. When I lived in Quincy... and even Danvers later on, the drive down 95 was shitty, and the drive back up through the 1/95N merge was pure hell if you left with the crowd. I'm talking hours to get home. Ever since we moved up to NH, and I just take 495 there and back, plus I always park in P11 which has a pretty easy exit, that in-and-out headache is MUCH better, and that was the worst part of it in my mind. Between that and knowing to head into the stadium a little before the crowds, I've eliminated what were the worst parts of gameday at the stadium. Now if only I could reliably schedule my bathroom trips to when the line isn't out the damn door, it would be perfect.

Bottom line: For these ~8 games a year, I get to go hang out with a friend, and drink casually, and watch football live.... without (and this is the key) my 4 kids buzzing around me like mosquitos. Any hassles I run into as part of the experience are well worth it.
 

Over Guapo Grande

panty merchant
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Nov 29, 2005
4,726
Worcester

Ale Xander

Hamilton
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
76,297
My 2 cents...

I'll be doing what I do almost every game. Arriving early with a buddy (who happens to be from ESPN), and parking at the very front of P11 across from the stadium. Setting up for some drinking (I've got a 12 pack and some Macallan 18) and grilling, and hanging out with the various other folks who end up parked around us. In my experience, you can find fun, friendly people almost everywhere doing some excellent tailgating. We've been doing this for most home games for the past 9 years or so. Lots "officially" open at 3:30 tomorrow, so some of them will likely open a little earlier than that, and people WILL be lined up to get in. There will almost certainly be a rush of folks arriving as the lots open, and then a bigger rush of folks arriving between 5-6, which seems standard for a weeknight game. If you get there (by car) any time after 6:30, traffic will suck. CBS Scene can certainly be fun pregame, and we've also had a good time with the folks at the "Redneck Bar" (Toby Keith's) a few times too. In my opinion, there's no reason to go into the stadium TOO early, except to beat the gate crowds. Though I'm curious as to what precisely they're planning to do with these Bud Light light-up cups they're putting at every seat tomorrow, and I won't be missing any of the pregame stuff for THIS game for sure.

Depending on how deep into the bag I get tailgating, I might head in early to try and get Troy Brown's autograph (7-8) in Lot 4 behind the Proshop.
I would disagree with the times here, based on the pregame stuff. I would say biggest rush would be 4-5:30 (getting off I-95 at exit 8 or 9) and traffic will suck the entire time, from 3:15 onward until about 8:15.
 

Ale Xander

Hamilton
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
76,297
I'll be doing the same and not even remotely jealous of those dealing with the shit show. Im sure it'll be great to experience, but I'm far beyond wanting to deal with the madness of a game at Foxboro, let alone one like this. I don't even want to be in a bar. I'd rather be on my couch and be able to pay attention.
Completely agree here. Once I (mostly) give up on the ticket search around 3, this will be my plan.
---
I am envious of those people that were able to secure Hilton Garden Inn or Renaissance reservations (and tickets) and don't have to work tomorrow (since you won't get to sleep at least until 2, maybe 3).
 

Spelunker

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Jul 17, 2005
12,727
Dominic, where are you staying? In Boston or closer to the stadium?

Theres some stuff going on in boston durine the day tomorrow. Rumors that Jon Bon Jovi may play some music at christopher columbus park. That kind of shit.
Looks like it's just Guster.
 

Ale Xander

Hamilton
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
76,297
If you know a cop in any neighborhood towns providing checkpoint detail, I would advise anyone to get a hold of them now, and see if they can help you can past the back road entry checkpoints.

Or better, a friend with parking space within walking distance (2-3 miles)
 

edmunddantes

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Jul 28, 2015
4,737
Cali
The commissioner attends the opener every year, so this date has been on Goodell’s schedule since New England won Super Bowl 51. In an effort to mitigate the negative reaction from fans in Foxborough, Goodell will finish up his pregame duties on the field early and will be off the field before the majority of Patriots fans are inside the stadium. The Patriots will not flash to any shots of the commissioner during the game on the video screens inside the stadium, and Goodell will not be sitting in Patriots owner Robert Kraft’s suite. (He did visit Kraft’s suite briefly during his preseason appearance.)
Might want to get to your seats early if you want to boo the commisioner.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

Homeland Security
SoSH Member
Dec 4, 2005
19,615
Portsmouth, NH
Dude. Being able to be there in person in Foxboro for the playoff games last year and two years ago has been unbelievably great. Why are you dead inside?
I deal with drunken idiot crowds four nights a week at work, I don't particularly enjoy them on my days off. I'd also rather watch on a 60" high def TV where I can see everything perfectly, use the bathroom during breaks and am not paying $7 for a Bud Light. I'm sure it'll be a great experience and I understand that, I'm just past that point in life, I guess. Part of me is certainly jealous of you guys going, but also part of me smiles thinking of how I won't have to deal with it all.

I hear this a lot but it's really not that hectic if you can get down there early. We'll leave Reading, MA around 2:30, be down there in about 45 min with little traffic and have a few hours to hang out grill etc. before walking in. If you don't dick around at the end of the game, it's really not even that bad getting out unless you park in the stadium lot, if you do that then you're asking for it.

If you can't leave before 3pm though, that's a whole other story. Leaving at like 4 for this is absolutely brutal.

I've stated many times on here for most night games I'm no longer going. It's just not worth being so tired the next day, but for this and playoffs? All day. (or night in this case)
It's not really the getting down there part, it's the getting out part. Last night game I went to was the Sunday night game against the Broncos a few years ago when they made the big comeback. It was awesome to be there and we were even in a box, but I also live in NH and getting home at like 3:30 AM blew pretty hard. I have no doubt if I lived closer and went more regularly (so as to know the little tricks), it would be improved. As it is, I'm content not dropping all that time and money.

Bottom line: For these ~8 games a year, I get to go hang out with a friend, and drink casually, and watch football live.... without (and this is the key) my 4 kids buzzing around me like mosquitos. Any hassles I run into as part of the experience are well worth it.
I can definitely see this, if not fully appreciate it, since I don't have kids. But I do feel for my friends that have them and end up having to pause the game seventeen times to deal with their kids and I inadvertently end up ruining something by texting them when they weren't caught up yet.
 

Bowhemian

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Nov 10, 2015
6,049
Bow, NH
PP. living in NH I know exactly what you mean. But when I can get to a night game, I drag my pop-up camper and spend the night at Normandy Farms campground just down Rt 1. So worth the $60 for those late games. Sure, it requires taking the next day off...but that's better than getting home at 4 AM.
 

Fisks Of Fury

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Jul 16, 2005
1,558
Plaistow, NH
PP. living in NH I know exactly what you mean. But when I can get to a night game, I drag my pop-up camper and spend the night at Normandy Farms campground just down Rt 1. So worth the $60 for those late games. Sure, it requires taking the next day off...but that's better than getting home at 4 AM.
Got home to Plaistow, NH at just after 2am this morning. Not as euphoric as I had been when I left. 495 was wide open the whole way though.
 

NortheasternPJ

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Nov 16, 2004
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Got home to Plaistow, NH at just after 2am this morning. Not as euphoric as I had been when I left. 495 was wide open the whole way though.
I jinxed myself on the way down with my post. left Reading, MA at 2:30 and didn't get there until 4:35. What a shitshow the southern half of 128 still is in the never-ending project down there.

We did fine getting out, got home around 1:45. That was a long long game though.