Joshua Lyke ENC 1101 Prof. Abbondanza Description Essay Word count 1,137 Sun Life Stadium “…And that’s another Miami Dolphins first down! ” The crowd roars with approval as their hometown team advances down the field, driving for a touchdown. This is the now familiar sound to me out of Sun Life Stadium, home to the Miami Dolphins football team along with the Florida Marlins baseball team. Foam fingers, football jersey’s, and the smell of shirtless Dolphin fan’s in the humid South Florida heat all add up to the perfect Sunday afternoon on those very memorable occasion’s. Throughout my life I had always longed for my chances to hitch a ride with a family member or friend, being the backup plan for a spare ticket. And when my opportunities came I never hesitated to take the hour long ride down to that modern age coliseum. Which for Sun Life Stadium the term “coliseum” is the most proper description as its architectural beauty surely rivals that of Rome’s historical battlegrounds, the atmosphere can be felt from miles around to all who come to embrace the spirit of competition that is within its confides, and the long lasting memories I’ve experienced while there are to be held closely to me and each member of this brotherhood of football fans. Truly Sun Life Stadium is a place worthy of being considered more than just a tourist attraction. I hold a special significance to this stadium as I have been there before and had the pleasure of enjoying that age old test of skill called professional sports. Sun Life Stadium is known well for its architectural beauty, such as the unique swirling ramps alongside the corners of the stadium. These ramps are used to transport spectators through the level system up the stadium, while doing so also building up anticipation. Once I’ve arrived to the tunnels leading out to the stadium seats I notice the beautiful view of the spacious parking lot filled with thousands of fellow spectators, all flooding the entrance. Stepping upwards through the long dark tunnel I notice a wide wave of bright orange with speckles of vibrant teal. Next to attract my eyes are the enormous crystal clear scoreboard’s standing on either end of the massive bowl, replaying every game changing second of play in high definition. Two seated decks angled to focus attention on the field below allow even those in the “nose-bleed” section to get a good look at the action. Sun Life Stadium is constructed to hold over seventy-five thousand people on any given Sunday. The stadium itself rests on two-hundred and eighty acres of land; one-hundred and sixty of those acres comprise what resembles an over-sized orange bowl. Progressing down the nearly infinite steps I approach a specially formatted field close to one-thousand square feet, groomed to transform between a fully functional football and baseball field. All those who attend an event at Sun Life Stadium are sure to marvel at its strikingly elegant simplicity. Competition is what has driven even the most primitive sports and the atmosphere around Sun Life Stadium is purely that, seeping into the veins of all the die-hard fans traveling towards its gates. Suspense is usually the overwhelming emotion felt within the audience as they sit on the edge of their seats, hopeful for a miracle comeback or perhaps to retain their narrow lead. As I walk around the spiral ramp towards my seat I listen to the roar of the crowd, simultaneously chanting with the announcer. People are all around me arguing over statistics, team records, and star players all trying to show their team pride. Store windows are lined with various memorabilia, selling any common item that a team insignia can be slapped on. Hundreds of concession stand employees shouting over the passing crowd, trying to entice potential customers with the thoughts of delicious treats and thirst quenching refreshments. Approaching the field, floor-shaking stomps can be felt under my feet spreading outwards on the grey floor. The loud thuds of clashing pads or the crack of a bat are followed up with the shouting of coaches as strategies for both teams are being given. In the end some have to walk away defeated and some victorious, either way the spirit of the game continues even after Sun Life Stadium is far out of my rear view mirror. Although I have many fond memories of Sun Life Stadium they all have come in just a few visits. Growing up I never had the fortune of season tickets or the pleasure of heading down to Miami on Sunday to watch my favorite team play. However, once I was near eight years old some friendly neighbors at the time took notice to my passion for sports. I still remember the day they took me to my first baseball game, I was anxious to say the least. Once I got there it was better than I had hoped for, watching a homerun soar over the left field wall off the bat of my favorite player Mike Lowell. In the souvenir shop I got a Marlins t-shirt and a poster to hang on my wall at home. A few years later some relatives of mine decided to treat me to my first Dolphins football game as a birthday present. Even though I had been to Sun Life Stadium once before it still felt like a new experience. Outside the stadium I got my first chance to tailgate, we had a few subs as I played a game of football with some fellow Dolphin fans. After finding my seat I looked around and got a sudden feeling of being under prepared. Everyone seemed to either have their face painted or was dressed from head to toe in orange and teal. How I was dressed didn’t seem to matter to them, I still got a high five and an “oh yeah! ” every time the Dolphins made a good play. I never remembered a hotdog tasting as good as it did when I went for a halftime snack. I have so many memories from just those few hours of fun, and every one of them I hope I can relive soon. In short, Sun Life Stadium is a shining example of how far professional sports have come. The stadium represents the art and mysticism of a coliseum in a modern form, has an atmosphere filled with strong emotions, and brings great memories to everyone in the audience. Sun Life Stadium has been remodeled and had a few name changes, but its purpose stays the same. It is a meeting place for all who won’t settle for watching the game from the couch, a common ground for those who consider face painting an art form, and a sanctuary to games that have stood the test of time.
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