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Official Review by Brian Jones, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
Fifth Third Bank Stadium is the home of Kennesaw State University football, which started in the fall of 2015. However, the stadium itself opened in 2010.
The stadium was originally opened for the KSU women’s soccer team and the Atlanta Beat, which was a women’s professional soccer team from 2010-2011. However, the stadium was also built to host football, which was approved in 2013.
It’s not the biggest college football stadium, as it holds a little over 8,000. But for the conference the football team plays in, which is the Big South Conference, it’s the right size.
Fifth Third Bank Stadium is a very good place to watch college football in Georgia. If you don’t want to deal with the crowd and still get high quality football with reasonable prices and good access, then Fifth Third Bank Stadium is the place to be.
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Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".
Because of the size of the stadium, there are only two main concession stands that provide a wide variety of food. And the prices are reasonable, as you can get a chicken sandwich and chips for $7.00.
And if you don't want anything from the main concession stands, there are kiosks that sell food all across the main concourse of the stadium, such as barbecue and pretzels.
Since Atlanta is Coke country, there are plenty of Coca-Cola drinks that are offered at the stadium. And there are no alcoholic beverages served, even though the stadium is not on campus.
Whenever you enter Fifth Third Bank Stadium, you know you are in for a treat when it comes to the atmosphere.
The way the stadium is set up, the seats are close to the action, unlike Sanford Stadium or Bobby Dodd Stadium. Even if you're at the very last row, you can hear what the players and coaches are saying on the field. The one cool thing about the stadium is the video board and the seats below it. For an FCS school, the video board has everything you want, because it has player introductions, replays and hype videos. And the seats below are nice, because those are general admission seats, but they are just as good as a regular seat when it comes to watching the action.
The band is huge for an FCS school, and the quality of sound is just as good as any band from a major college. And the PA announcer is smooth and has a great delivery.
Kennesaw is one of the fastest-growing cities in Georgia and part of it has to do with the enrollment of the school being the second-highest in the state of Georgia. Fifth Third Bank Stadium is located in the heart of Kennesaw, which means there is plenty to do before and after the game.
There are plenty of restaurants to choose from, as the stadium is located in a busy section of the city. Taco Mac, Trackside Grill and Sidelines are the best places to have a pregame and postgame party. Also, Town Center Mall is two minutes away from the stadium, and there is a big food court that includes Chick-fil-A and Ruby Tuesday.
If you are looking for attractions in the area, Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield and the Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History are the best bets. Both places provide a ton of history, and you can spend all day at both places if you wanted to.
And if you want to find more attractions, downtown Atlanta is only 20 minutes south of Kennesaw, and you can find the Coca-Cola Museum, the Georgia Aquarium and the College Football Hall of Fame.
The fan base for the Kennesaw State was strong in its first season. The average attendance was 8,820 fans per game, which is not bad, considering the capacity is less than that.
The fans are different from other schools because it's a young program. So the fans, especially the students, are still trying to figure out traditions, chants and other things to make them unique.
However, the fans at Fifth Third Bank Stadium are loud, passionate and hungry, because they have been waiting for Kennesaw State to field a football team for a long time. They will be a special group as the team gets more seasons under their belt.
Because the stadium is located in metro Atlanta and not in the heart of the city, getting to and from the stadium is not a disaster.
However, the only thing that is missing is public transportation. In Atlanta, MARTA can get you to and from Falcons, Braves and Hawks games. That is not the case in Kennesaw, because MARTA does not run in Cobb County.
In the grand scheme of things, there is no real need for public transportation, because there are plenty of parking spots and driving to the stadium is easy, especially if you live in the metro Atlanta area.
Each gate entry is easy when it comes to security checks, and the concourse is big, so getting to and from your seat is never an issue.
There are a good amount of restrooms for the size of the stadium that stay clean all game long.
You definitely get your money's worth when coming to Fifth Third Bank Stadium.
The cost of tickets will be $25-$40 for each game, which is good, considering it could be triple that price for a Georgia or Georgia Tech game, but a little on the high side comparatively in the FCS.
Parking will cost $10-$15, and food may cost you a total of $10, if you were to get a sandwich, chips and a drink. So for an overall individual experience, a person will pay $50 for a ticket and food. On top of that, you get to watch Division I football in the Atlanta area. That is not a bad deal, if you ask me.
Check out the Owl Walk they do before the game. It's a great way to interact with the players and coaches before they get ready for the game.
There is a fan gear store located in the stadium. It's the place to buy any KSU gear, such as a hat, shirt and jersey.
There are also unique seats located in the corner of the stadium. Instead of traditional seats, there are seats with tables where fans can watch the game as well as eat and drink with no issues.
Fifth Third Bank Stadium is a very good place to take in some college football in the Atlanta area. It's not the same experience as Sanford Stadium at the University of Georgia, but it's a fun atmosphere that has good fans, good food and cheap tickets. Sounds like a good Saturday to me.
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