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Harry A. Gampel Pavilion

Storrs, CT

Home of the Connecticut Huskies

4.3

N/A

Harry A. Gampel Pavilion (map it)
2095 Hillside Rd
Storrs, CT 06269


Connecticut Huskies website

Harry A. Gampel Pavilion website

Year Opened: 1990

Capacity: 10,167

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Huskies Hardcourt

Gampel Pavilion is one of two homes for the University of Connecticut men’s and women’s basketball teams. The gym is located on campus in Storrs, CT. The other home for the UConn basketball teams is the XL Center in Hartford, CT.

In the 2012-2013 season, the men’s team played 18 home games, with eight games being played at Gampel Pavilion and 10 games held at the XL Center. Gampel Pavilion was constructed in 1990 and the seating capacity is 10,167. It is the largest on-campus arena in New England, and it is known as an iconic building on campus. The only sport played at Gampel Pavilion is basketball.

4.3

What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    3

Standard fare is offered at the concession stands. Options include: Brenda's Best Pretzels ($4), popcorn ($4) Coke ($4), Powerade ($4), Vitamin water ($5), Minute Maid Lemonade ($4) and U Conn Water ($3).

In addition there is one location that sells sausage and peppers. At another location at Gampel you can purchase fried dough ($5) and clam chowder ($5). A third concession area offers hamburgers ($7), candy and cotton candy. You can find a little bit of everything at Gampel. The one thing however you won't find is any alcoholic beverages, as they aren't sold at Gampel Pavilion.

Another point of interest is that UConn makes their own ice cream on campus which you can pick up at the UConn Dairy Bar.

Atmosphere    5

Attending a game at Gampel Pavilion is an experience you won't soon forget. For starters, this is Big East basketball, which is one of the most intense conferences and physical style of defense that is played in the country. Games are usually very close and highly-contested. Case in point, I attended the UConn versus Georgetown game. UConn was trailing by 12 points in the second half, but managed to tie the game on a three-point shot with just two seconds remaining in regulation. The arena went nuts. UConn unfortunately lost the game in double overtime, but the crowd was in the game the whole time.

The school band is loud and the students are chanting or humming throughout the game. The arena was packed, as this game turned out to be the first sellout game of the season at Gampel Pavilion. In addition, there is not one bad seat in the entire arena.

Walking around the arena prior to tipoff, you can check out all of the banners that acknowledge past championships and All-American players. UConn has a rich tradition in basketball. Currently there are 13 players in the NBA from UConn, which ranks the school No. 5 overall in the country.

Neighborhood    4

Gampel Pavilion is located on the UConn campus, which is a sprawling complex that covers over 4,000 acres. The campus is a rural setting and you won't find many businesses surrounding the campus. There is a new mall that is being constructed off-campus that will include some up-scale restaurants. It will be built in eight phases and looks like they are making good progress on it.

For spectators that want to come in the day before the game, you can stay at the Nathan Hale Inn, which is located on campus. They also have a restaurant at the Inn, which is just a two minute walk to Gampel Pavilion.

You can find directions to the arena on the Connecticut basketball website. Once you arrive on campus, you need to drive to the parking garage on Stadium Road, which is right across the street from the Pavilion. It is a very convenient location.

Fans    5

Behind one basket you will find a strong contingent of the student body, which also contains the band. Sitting directly in front of them, it was clear from the comments that I overheard that the kids really know their basketball quite well. They are into the game and do whatever they can to distract the opposition, or at least try to rattle them.

The kids brought in some signs and the big cut out faces of star players (and Will Ferrell). The game was televised by ESPN, so the fans were going nuts whenever the cameras were on them and broadcasting live. T-shirts are thrown into the crowd during timeouts and students are shown dancing to the music on the video scoreboard.

Fans are entertained by videos from the scoreboard, contests that are conducted during time outs and halftime features, which during my most recent visit was a traveling group of youngsters that performed some amazing ball handling skills.

Access    5

There are a number of entrances and exits conveniently located around the arena. The walkways around the outside are wide enough to accommodate the crowd, which was evident since the game I attended was the first sellout game of the year.

There is handicap access to the stadium, as well as designated handicapped seats. Parking is located across the street in the parking garage.

Return on Investment    4

Single game ticket prices are $33 per game. The school also offers mini-plans and season ticket plans.

As far as parking goes, the South garage is very convenient, right across the street from the Pavilion, and costs $12 to park there. If you want to save a few bucks, you can park in the North garage, which is $8, and would be about a five-minute walk to Gampel Pavilion.

Gampel Pavilion has added stat boards in the arena, to keep fans appraised of how players from both teams are performing. That represents an added value to the fans in attendance. The school instituted a Huskies of Honor program that began in 2008. They honor the men and women athletes that became First-Team All Americans.

Extras    4

The UConn experience also offers fans the Husky Heritage Sports Museum, which allows fans to see some of the history and various awards that the sports programs at UConn has generated over the years. It is roughly a two to three-minute walk from Gampel Pavilion.

There are photos around the arena paying tribute to great players from the program that have graduated and are now playing in the NBA.

I noted a number of ESPN personalities in attendance, which is possible due to the reasonable proximity to Bristol, CT, where ESPN is headquartered.

If you have never attended a game at Gampel Pavillion, or a live Big East basketball game, put this on your list of must-see things to do. You will be glad you did.

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Local Food & Drink

True Blue Tavern  (map it!)

855 Bolton Rd

Storrs, CT 06268

(860) 427-7888

http://www.nathanhaleinn.com/dining-en.html

Local Entertainment

Lodging

Nathan Hale Inn  (map it!)

855 Bolton Rd

Storrs, CT 06268

(860) 427-7888

http://www.nathanhaleinn.com/

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