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#1 2jakefansinva

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 01:02 PM

From those who have experienced it................Tell me all about it.

my son and I will be arriving in Charlotte early afternoon on Friday. We'll meet up with a friend of mine and head down to Spartanburg for Fri. evening TC @ 6pm.

Then we'll do Fan Fest on Sat. @ 4pm.


Does the Huddle......

tailgate before?

Meet @ a bar close by?

Meet somewhere in the stadium?


inquiring minds want too know..........

I also have heard that the old tailgate spot is no longer useable...........

maybe this is a good time to seek out that new location and........

Get this party started!


Looking forward to seeing a bunch of ya'll either way. B)

#2 Catalyst

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 01:20 PM

I've never been with any other Huddle members, but I did go every year from 2005-2009 and am familiar with the event. Not so much with any tailgating, however.

Basically, the line to get in starts forming at least an hour or two ahead of when the doors open. If you want a good shot at autographs afterward, make sure you're near the front of the line and hurry to your seat when they let you in as the front row seats fill quickly, They're by far the best seats for autograph seekers, particularly right by the player entrance.

Before the doors open, they have games, music, the top cats, etc. outside the stadium. I've never really hung around any of this, though, so I wouldn't know what all they have. I do recall a guy in a giant eyeball costume walking around one year, though. Still not sure what the hell that was about.

Once they let you in, it's about an hour to an hour and a half before the actual practice begins. The team store opens and is usually jam packed. The top cats usually do a routine and Sir Purr shows up as well. They used to show the previous year's NFL Yearbook highlight film on the big screen, but I'm not sure if they do that anymore.

Once the practice starts, you'll see some of the UDFA's and lesser known players - along with kickers/punters - come out, followed by some of the 'name' players. They spend a lot of time stretching and warming up before practice. Usually it's the starting offense vs. backup D and backup offense vs. starting D in the scrimmage itself.

Afterward, most players go to the wall to sign autographs. It gets hectic here, even if you are in the front row. People act crazy about this, so if you have kids be careful. Best thing to have autographed is either a jersey or football. The autographs usually last 15-20 minutes or so. Maybe 30 for some players.

#3 KendrickPanther

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 01:30 PM

This year the times are different so some stuff may be subject to change. Basically the gates open at 2:30. If you want good Autograph seats you will need to be in line by noon maybe. It's really hot a miserable standing in line for that long but if you want autographs that's how it works. There will be booths with free stuff outside the stadium on the north side. Usually they have some inflatable bouncy rooms for kids. Lot's of people take pictures with the Sam Mills statue.

So when the gates open at 2:30 there are three things going on:
-People rushing for Good Seats
-People rushing to enter the kick/pass on the field
-People rushing to the new team store

You need to figure out which is important to you and go for it. The team store will always be there but they may sell out of something you want. You need to get in line to kick field goals (16&up) or throw a pass (kids) early. The line gets so long they have to turn people down and move on to other things. If you have multiple adults you can send one for seats and the other with the kids on the field.

There are expensive concession stands on the concourse. The South East side of the stadium has the most shade. There will be Cheerleaders throwing T-Shirts into the first few rows of seats and Sir Purr firing his T-shirt Cannon. But mostly 2:30-4:30 will be a pretty boring wait. Practice starts, some of it's boring, some of it's fun. Then you get to the autographs, the stadium is huge and the players fan out to every corner, whom you get is pot luck. You may only get 4 or 5 players pass by your area. Cam tries to hit several spots but he can't get everyone. The players are only required to sign for 15 minutes so many of them head for the exits when their time is up.

-Bring a Hat
-Bring Sun Screen
-Sunglasses are nice as well
-Bring cash for parking
-You can bring water bottles but no flavored drinks
-They hand out these 14 by 7 or so pieces of cardboard with everyone's name, number, and picture. They are nice for autographs but easily get messed up. I have the backups sign that and the good players sign nicer stuff

Parking is usually pretty cheap, the deck right next to the stadium is the most convenient but they bait and switched us last year. There was a $5 parking sign outside with tiny print that said "early bird" which meant before 7AM. Guess they forgot to change the sign....yeah. We Paid like $17 to park there which is a bit much to me.

#4 4Corners

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 05:38 PM

It's gonna be hot and bring cash. Team store reopens on Saturday.

#5 TylerVagyler

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 07:15 PM

you guys think the middle-tier "limited" jerseys will be on sale saturday?

also, if i want autographs should i sit as close to the tunnel as possible? which end is the tunnel on?

#6 KendrickPanther

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 07:38 PM

you guys think the middle-tier "limited" jerseys will be on sale saturday?

also, if i want autographs should i sit as close to the tunnel as possible? which end is the tunnel on?


North West and South West corners of the stadium.

#7 SIGCHI222

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 10:13 PM

you guys think the middle-tier "limited" jerseys will be on sale saturday?

also, if i want autographs should i sit as close to the tunnel as possible? which end is the tunnel on?

Regardless, you will want to sit in the shade. After 3 hours of baking in that sun, $250 for Cam's autograph will seem like the best investment you ever made. TC is the best place to get auto's, BOA in August is the best place to get heat stroke. Good luck my brother!

#8 GaCatFan

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Posted 29 July 2012 - 10:59 PM

I guess it is legitimate, but the Panthers posted on their FanFest page on Facebook that the start time for FanFest has been moved to 6:15 PM. I don't see it on their website, though. I will try to find more info.

#9 TylerVagyler

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Posted 31 July 2012 - 10:00 AM

I guess it is legitimate, but the Panthers posted on their FanFest page on Facebook that the start time for FanFest has been moved to 6:15 PM. I don't see it on their website, though. I will try to find more info.


I think they just meant 615am. If you look at the schedule on the FB event, everything is still the same.

#10 Panthercougar68

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Posted 31 July 2012 - 10:02 AM

I can't wait for the store to open back up...I need a new flag.

#11 4Corners

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Posted 31 July 2012 - 11:18 AM

Also, it's most def family oriented. I went last year and got bored in about an hour. It's cool to check out for an hour or so but if you're scheduling your day a round it or have to drive a huge distance, you'll prob be disappointed.

#12 TylerVagyler

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Posted 02 August 2012 - 08:53 AM

I've been told that this weekend is tax-free weekend. If true, will the team store be participating in it?

#13 Brit-Panther

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Posted 02 August 2012 - 12:56 PM

I've been told that this weekend is tax-free weekend. If true, will the team store be participating in it?


Only if clothing is less that a $100 is my understanding. Which rules out Jerseys me thinks...

#14 KendrickPanther

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Posted 02 August 2012 - 03:02 PM

Yeah most clothing will be tax free. Possibly stuff like pencils and school supplies as well. They have been selling tons of reebok merchandise for 50% off in Spartanburg but still pretty expensive in my opinion. I have a Panthers themed AAA card that get's me 10% off at the team store. There is some odd stuff you will only find at the team store but most of it you could find in the mall or online.

#15 Herbert The Love Bug

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Posted 02 August 2012 - 07:09 PM

well I would say but I can because yeah that's why


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