The College Football Hall of Fame is hosting their Free day and Football Fest presented by The Peach Bowl on Marietta Street this Sat., Aug. 26 to showcase Atlanta as the Capital of College Football thanks to presenting sponsors, Chick-fil-A and Coca-Cola(TM). The 2023 season also begins tomorrow so there is no better way for fans in Georgia and around the nation to celebrate the Kickoff Game and first weekend of the season than visiting the Hall because admission is free from 9AM – 4PM. Kimberly Beaudin, College Football Hall of Fame’s first female CEO in the 71-year history after the National Football Foundation (NFF) launched the Hall back in 1951, chatted with the Sports Techie community blog today about the preparation her hardworking team did to get ready for Live DJs, interactive games and prize giveaways, while updating the most high-profile, historic college football artifacts and state-of-the-art, interactive multimedia exhibits found in the one-of-a-kind facility. I attended the Hall’s opening day in August of 2014 and was fortunate enough to interview Legendary Georgia Tech Head Coach, Bill Curry. My son on the autism spectrum and I were invited again in 2018 when the building became the first sensory inclusive attraction in Atlanta certified by Kulture City. Last year, we took my son’s 5-year brother for his first time and saw the amazing fan experience through his eyes. The day’s festivities lead up to the Aflac Kickoff Game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sept. 1. The Hall’s ongoing partnership with the Atlanta Falcons is another corporate relationship that gives back to the communities.
“We are thrilled to once again kick off the college football season with this spectacular event,” said Kimberly Beaudin, CEO of the College Football Hall of Fame. “This is a wonderful opportunity for fans of all ages to come together and join the excitement and buzz surrounding the start of a new season and showcase why Atlanta is the capital of college football.”
Sports Technology Enhanced Exhibits
The HOF has a Microsoft activation outside at Football Fest where visitors can engage with the Surface Sideline Viewing (SVS) implemented by Microsoft for NFL games in 2013. I was the Director of Sales for Sports 2000 in 1995 enabled me to sell the GridIron 2000, expert game planning system on Windows 95, co-developed by the Seattle Seahawks. Learning about the key features, verbiage and terms for this state-of the-art software system and directly interact with the newest version of the SVS system is what I love to do. This activation was not a not part of Football Fest last year. Microsoft also update the Hall’s hardware and installed Window 11.
Kimberley also talked about new aspects of the College GameDay desk inside the Hall. After a six-month over haul, the green screen behind the desk was replaced with machine learning technology created a more authentic virtual experience showcasing your college football programs colors and logos behind the broadcasters. Shout out goes to Home Depot and the developers for updating this interactive exhibit.
Coming by the end of the year is the X-Box Game Lounge featuring EA Sports new College Football 24 video game.
If you’ve never been inside the Hall, the digital fan experience begins with entering your favorite college football team into the touchscreen kiosk enabling RFID tech to customize the exhibits with your university of choice. For me, I pick the Michigan State University where my late Dad attended. It is something else to see Spartans Hall of Famers come up on big screens and kiosks the likes of Clinton Jones, Jimmy Raye and Bubba Smith.
Free Day Things To Do
Hardcore and casual fans of college football alike can look forward to a star-studded lineup of live DJs, including DJ Jay Envy, official DJ for the Atlanta Falcons, and DJ Euphoria and DJ Danny M, who rock The Home Depot Backyard prior to Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United events, and led by the always energetic MC Carlos Morales. The family friendly atmosphere promised to be electric all day.
Football Fest is ready for the August’s outdoor hear with industrial fans and misting stations located strategically outside the hall and cool air condition inside.
Look for inflatables, interactive booths and games, and the opportunity to win prize giveaways. Festivities and entertainment include guest appearances by energetic, local team mascots, talented cheerleaders and cheer squads, and everyone’s game day favorite, the marching bands.
ESPN’s College GameDay Bus sponsored by The Home Depot is hard to miss and available at the live event for a unique photo opportunity.
Be sure to look for the updated Tailgate, HBCU and ‘Call The Play’ exhibits inside the HOF.
Kimberley was equally excited about the new and exclusive Members Lounge for College Football Hall of Fame members open from 9AM to 5PM. Football Fest visitors can purchase memberships during the event and join in on the perks reserved for fellow college football fanatics.
Tickets are not mandatory yet guests had the option to reserve their spot at cfbhall.com/tickets, and gain access to the ‘Fast Pass’ line, ensuring minimal wait times for entry to the event. Beaudin had to shut down this option at noon today after distributing 3,500 coveted tickets.
Sports Techie, all this immersive college football fun is what makes the Hall a must-stop destination for any level of college football fan. The 94,256-square-foot attraction is located in the heart of Atlanta’s sports, entertainment and tourism district.
Fans planning to attend are encouraged to consider utilizing Atlanta’s public transportation system, MARTA, in an effort to alleviate congestion around the popular Football Fest event.
I hope to see you there.
Down, set, hike!
See you later sportstechie in Seattle, Atlanta and around the world!
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