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  • Writer's pictureMichael Davis

Dickies Arena - Panther City Lacrosse


Photos by Michael Davis, Stadium Journey


Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 2.29

Dickies Arena 1911 Montgomery St Fort Worth, TX 76107

Year Opened: 2019 Capacity: 14,000

 

Panther City Lacrosse

The Panther City Lacrosse Club became the 14th franchise in the National Lacrosse League, and became the first professional men's lacrosse team in Fort Worth, Texas. Founded in 2020, the team plays their home games at Dickies Arena. Dickies Arena is a 14,000-seat multipurpose arena, located within the Will Rodgers Memorial Center, in the Art District of Fort Worth.


In the short time it has existed, Dickies Arena has hosted the NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships, the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament First and Second Rounds, the American Athletic Basketball Championships, and numerous concerts.


Dickies Area has many future major events in the pipeline and has become Fort Worth’s number one place for events.


Food & Beverage 2

Dickies Arena has a vast number and variety of concessions, but only a few are open during lacrosse games due to the lack of fans in attendance. The concessions prices are trying to make up for the lack of attendance, and are on par with major sports teams. The choices are above the basic, but out of place for lacrosse fans.

Tarrant Tex Mex sells Asada quesadillas, crispy taco baskets, chicken quesadillas, chicken flautas, Italian hero sandwiches, and turkey sandwiches for $11 to $14 each. The concessions also include the basic arena food snacks such as hot dogs, nachos, fries, pretzels, and candy from $5 to $6.50 each.


Dickies Arena serves a various amount of Pepsi products at $5.50 for a 24oz fountain drink; bottled water is a little less at $4.75.


The arena’s alcohol menu is acceptable, with the basic Bud, Coors Light, and Michelob Ultra ($11 to $12) – if you want to go to the next level, Karbach Brewery (Houston) has their Hopadillo and Love Street for $15 each; the wine list is extensive and ranges from $8 to $15.


Atmosphere 2

The arena has two levels, but only one is used for Panther City games. The upper deck has a curtain blocking the seats to give the arena a more intimate feel. The seating and sidelines are good, as the arena itself is top notch.


An LED scoreboard hangs above center court. It shows the game action video, score, shots on goal, time remaining, and quarter.


The opening introduction of players has an impressive pyrotechnic opening. There is constant music being played to pump up the crowd, or at least bring noise into an otherwise dead crowd. Panther City does have dancers/cheerleaders that are on the end of the rink on a stage. Just like a second thought and weren’t really involved; out of sight, out of mind. Panther City does have a mascot named Prowler, who interacts with the crowd and is entertaining. There are events on the carpet between periods. The game itself has moments, but the lack of fans inside Dickies Arena really kills any type of atmosphere which would make someone who isn’t a lacrosse fan excited to attend a game.

Neighborhood 3

The area directly surrounding Dickies Arena is Fort Worth’s Cultural District, and is located west of downtown Fort Worth. There isn’t much within walking distance for eating and drinking, and that brings this rating down, but within just one to three miles, plenty of choices for eating, drinking, and merriment are available.


Seventh Street has everything from Velvet Taco, Rodeo Goat, Pei Wei Asian Kitchen, and for a dress up dinner, Eddie’s V’s Prime seafood. There are more restaurants downtown at Sundance Square, and just north of Fort Worth is the famous Fort Worth Stockyards, where there are several fabulous steakhouses to choose from, as well as a Fort Worth staple in Joe T Garcia’s Mexican restaurant.


There is a lot to see in Fort Worth, and around Dickies Arena are the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens, Kimball Art Museum, and Museum of Science and History. A short distance away is the famous Fort Worth Stockyards, as mentioned, where you can see cattle run representing the Chisholm Trail bringing cattle from the Great Plains. Billy Bob’s Texas, titled ‘The World’s Largest Honky Tonk’ is also a great place to visit while in the Stockyards. In addition, the Fort Worth Zoo and Texas Christian University are within a short distance of Dickies Arena.


Courtyard by Marriott Fort Worth and Extended Stay-Fort Worth are nearby for lodging, but there are also numerous other hotel options in the Fort Worth area – it just depends on availability, price, and preference to decide where you settle while in Fort Worth. Wyndham Garden Inn is across the street from Dickies Arena, while the Ramada Inn is a block and a half away. I stayed at Ramada and while basic, it is clean and safe. Many more hotels in a variety of price ranges are also in the area so you can pick your preference.


Fans 2

Panther City lacrosse is trying to compete in a state that is very unfamiliar with lacrosse. Although lacrosse is played in high school there isn’t much of a fuss over it, especially in a football state. There is some interest, however, and the fans that show up to the games are vocal and know the game.


The crowd consists of families, kids, and school lacrosse teams. There are a lot of lacrosse jerseys being worn by fans, but mainly for the local high school team and not Panther City, although Panther City does have very cool uniforms.

The average attendance is around 2,880 per game; the arena only uses the lower half of the seating arena, but even that the fans can’t fill. Panther City is dead last compared to other teams in the NLL.


Access 3

Dickies Arena’s nearest airport is Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport – the 27-mile drive with traffic can take 45 minutes to an hour depending on when you plan to arrive in the DFW area. Otherwise getting to the arena is easy, as it is right off I-30 using the Montgomery Street exit, just west of downtown Fort Worth. Plenty of parking is available in lots surrounding the venue for $20. The box office is on the north side of the building, but only the south and west entrances are open for lacrosse games, and doors open an hour before the game.


Public transportation is available, but on a Friday or Saturday night, Uber/Lyft or renting a car is your best option. It is easy and painless to get through the security and scanning of your ticket, and the typical clear 12” x 6” x 12” bags are allowed. Fans can walk the entire concourse, but the upper level is off limits.


Tickets are available through Ticketmaster, an online ticket provider. Fans purchasing tickets at the box office must download the AXS app on their phone to get their tickets, however.


Return on Investment 2

For lacrosse fans, the return on investment may be higher, but the lowest price through Ticketmaster is $25 for general admission on the ends of the rink, while for better seats the prices can rise to $77. There are packages that offer a little discount, but with games being played only on Friday and Saturday nights, this event would be more for locals than travelers. The concessions prices seem a little high for the offerings, so I recommend visiting one of Fort Worth great restaurants instead.


Parking at Dickies Arena is $20; parking in the neighborhood is not recommended, as towing signs are plentiful. You may find cheaper parking at other garages in the Art District.


Extras 2

Panther City plays is an exceptional venue – Dickies Arena can compete with any arena in the country. Fort Worth is also a great city for visitors, with lots of lodging, restaurants, and tourist attractions.


Final Thoughts

This was my first experience with the NLL, and I see a lot of things Panther City should change to bring more fans to the games, and make going a big event instead of just being something for local lacrosse fans.


There are so many things to do in Fort Worth, but the cost of going to a Panther City game discourages fans from attending, since they can go up the road to a TCU baseball game for half the cost. However, there is potential in Fort Worth, with changes in marketing and ticket prices, to bring in more fans, because really this lacrosse team is what is missing in Fort Worth, as the team is competitive in making the playoffs.


The arena is exemplary – if Panther City can survive in the NLL, then Fort Worth will be a great tour stop for NLL fans.


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