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Official Review by Lloyd Brown, Stadium Journey Special Correspondent
The University of West Georgia (UWG) is a liberal arts university located in Carrollton, Georgia, approximately 50 miles west of Atlanta near the Georgia/Alabama state line. The university offers more than 60 degree programs, and is especially known for its schools of Nursing, Education and Music. More than 12,000 students attend the school, which has repeatedly been listed as one of the best Southeastern Colleges by the Princeton Review.
The University of West Georgia’s athletic teams are known as the Wolves, and they compete in the Gulf South Conference. Teams in this conference include Valdosta State University, The University of West Alabama, Shorter College and Delta State University. The home field for the Wolves is University Stadium, which was built in 2009, and has a seating capacity of 10,000. Its features include a designated tailgating area, 10 skyboxes and seatback seating for 3,000. The remaining seats are aluminum benches, so bringing a seat cushion is recommended.
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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".
Two concession stands are located on each side of the field, and are staffed by local civic organizations. Offerings include hot dogs ($3), Chick-fil-A sandwiches ($4.75), nachos ($3), pretzels ($2), popcorn ($3), sodas ($3) and bottled water ($3). Members of PAW (the booster club) may dine on the patio overlooking the end zone at the field house. You are not allowed to bring food or drinks into the stadium. There are some drink vendors in the stands, but they are few and far between.
University Stadium is only a few years old, and they have done a very nice job in making it both a comfortable and welcoming place to watch the game. In addition to the designated tailgate area, there is a playground for the smaller fans called the Friend Zone, featuring inflatables and local fuzzy mascots. The band at UWG is top rate (the University has a School of Music) and their halftime show features jazz favorites with several horn solos, which is a nice change from the usual show tunes. Since the stadium is off-campus, the University Bookstore comes to you, as they have set up a fully-supplied spirit shop on the concourse, which is a nice touch. Seating is general admission, other than the chairback section for season ticket holders, which allows you to move around and follow the action, rather than remain in a static location the whole game.
The stadium is not located on campus. UWG has all of its athletic facilities (track, football, soccer, softball and baseball) grouped at a centralized sports complex. As a result, the area has a feel of a city park, with the only neighbors being student apartment complexes on one side, and well, cows and farms on the other. The neighborhood surrounding the university (which you will pass through on the way to the stadium) features primarily fast food locations that cater to students. The better choices of eating establishments are on the town square, called Adamson Square. Among the most recommended by the locals are Plates on the Square (301 Adamson Square) and the Irish Bred Pub and Grill (210 Adamson Square). A majority of the reasonably-priced accommodations are located five miles from the stadium along Highway 166, which cuts straight through town. These brands include Quality Inn, a Holiday Inn Express and a Hampton Inn.
UWG fans are a howl...literally. They have perfected the wolf howl for touchdowns, first downs, interceptions and sacks of the quarterback. They have plenty of help, as the PA system is constantly playing recorded howls. In addition, the UWG mascot Wolfie circulates the stands to egg the fans on. Seriously, the Wolves faithful are very loyal to the team. They can easily generate enough noise so that the opposing quarterback has difficulty calling plays. They gladly welcome visitors and discuss the team's successes or failures to date, and are very courteous about not blocking your view by sitting immediately in front of you, as the general admission seating areas usually are not tightly packed.
Given the off-campus location, the stadium is easy to get to. It is a straight shot through the campus and then about two miles further on the same road out to the sports complex. There is ample signage to guide you to the complex, and parking in the sports park is plentiful, as it serves several different sports. Another option for alumni and on-campus students is to ride the free shuttle over to the stadium. The shuttles run continuously, not just before and after the game. I applaud this decision, as if foul weather were to kick up or the game is a blowout, you don't want to be stranded out at the sports complex. My ranking for this section is low only because you feel so removed from the feel of a college campus.
The Wolves' football games provide you with a very good return on your investment. General admission tickets are $15 (anything other than a season ticket is a general admission seat), so you have great latitude in where you sit. The concession prices are about average, and the spirit shop merchandise is very reasonably priced. Parking at the Sports Complex is $5, with the option of parking on campus and riding the free shuttles. If you are planning to spend the night in Carrollton, expect lodging in the $60-$80 range.
A very nice feature of Carrollton and UWG is the Carrollton Greenbelt Trail. This is a 16-mile paved hike/bike trail that allows you to navigate all around both the campus and the city without having to navigate traffic. There are benches, restroom facilities and bike racks located all along the route, and I enjoyed my stroll while waiting for the 2pm kickoff.
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301 Adamson Sq
Carrollton, GA 30117
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