Photo by Jeff Bell – UltiPhotos.com
The Nighthawks are proud to announce that Thunderbird Stadium at the University of British Columbia will once again serve as their home field in 2014.
Though they may not have tasted enough success on the field during their initial MLU season, the Vancouver Nighthawks attracted the highest attendance and most boisterous fans of any MLU team, and part of the reason was their home stadium.
Since it opened in October 1967 to serve as the University of British Columbia’s primary outdoor sports facility, Thunderbird Stadium has hosted competition in many different sports, as well as concerts, festivals, and other cultural events. Located at the heart of the UBC campus, the stadium features a 150-metre by 75-metre artificial turf field and is capable of accommodating up to 8,500 spectators.
But perhaps the best thing about Thunderbird stadium is its setting. The stands are set in an amphitheatre carved out of a hillside and face west, so during MLU games the fans get fabulous views of the setting sun over the forest.
To the Vancouver Ultimate community, Thunderbird Stadium is known as the site for the finals of many different competitions, including the 1997 World Ultimate Club Championships, the 2008 World Ultimate and Guts Championships, and most recently, the Canadian Ultimate Championships this last summer.
With all that history, for the Nighthawks it was “an easy choice to use Thunderbird as the home stadium,” according to operations manager Brian Gisel. “When the weather is nice — and it was nice for all five home games — you can’t beat the atmosphere and view.” Sometimes fans are treated to the sight of an eagle or, ahem, a hawk flying by, framed by the orange rays of the sunset.
And here’s something for Nighthawks fans to look forward to. According to Gisel, “There has been talk of upgrading the building around the field within the next decade. Exact plans are not yet available, but a significant upgrading to seats, including luxury boxes, concession stands, dressing rooms, support offices, and the scoreboard could be expected.”
The Nighthawks have made Thunderbird Stadium their own by dubbing it The Nest. The sign outside may read Thunderbird Stadium, but once it is full of Nighthawks players and fans, it becomes the Home of the Vancouver Nighthawks – Our Nest. The players love the atmosphere, and the fans love coming to watch, so the Nighthawks are excited to continue using it as their home base for the upcoming 2014 season beginning next April.