Slap on some khaki shorts and a baby blue button down. It’s time for Carolina football. Okay, not everyone here dresses this way, but enough to remind you that this is football in the south. One thing is for certain – the gameday experience in Chapel Hill is one of the best.
Start on Franklin Street, grab some coffee and browse the shops amongst a slew of Carolina blue. Cross the quad and admire the tree laden surroundings and historic architectural backdrop. On the other side, you’ll reach the Old Well. This historic landmark used to be the campus’s only source of water in the late nineteenth century. Today, it is replaced by a water fountain (city water) that brings good luck to those who drink from it. This spot also marks the beginning of the Old Well Walk. The team buses drop the Tarheels off and they are greeted by a flurry of fans lining up to cheer them on as they move toward Kenan Stadium. The cheerleaders, band, and Rameses the mascot add to the onset of gameday. Follow the drumline as they move toward The Pit and entertain fans with a raucous beat. The band forms again as a whole and drills out “Carolina Victory” and other popular tunes that echo throughout campus. As they finish up and lead everyone toward the stadium, you’ll pass the bell tower, which is a must visit. Fans are given the opportunity to climb this iconic piece of history and take in the view of the stadium and surrounding campus. This structure is seeping with tradition and provides visitors with that VIP feel.
Descend from the tower and be sure to get a picture with the live Rameses mascot – a gorgeous Ram with Carolina blue painted horns. For folks taking this all in, a huge impact has been made and they haven’t even passed through the stadium gates yet. Once inside Kenan Stadium, the beauty and tradition doesn’t cease. Set amongst the Carolina pines, this ranks as one of the most picturesque venues in the country. The stadium offers a proper balance of new renovations and old classic style, which blends it perfectly into the rest of campus. The team rolls out of the tunnel and the crowd roar impresses upon you that basketball isn’t the only show in town. Although much of pregame is refined and proper, the energy in the stands suggests otherwise. Everyone keeps active throughout the contest and with each first down, the loudspeaker exclaims “FIRST DOWN TAR…” to which the crowd exhaults “HEELS!” The reverberation is deafening. After a victory, players gather to sing the alma mater and “Carolina Victory.” Fans leaving the stadium will pass the bell tower, which plays the same songs from the rafters. Tarheel supporters continue the lively celebrations throughout campus well beyond when the sun dips behind the pines, and as you reflect upon your gameday experience, every aspect of this place will make you want to bleed Carolina blue.