Sports are a large part of American culture. Teams and players are hailed as heroes in their hometowns. But one aspect of sports that is just as important is the venues. Stadiums have become gathering places for fanatics to break bread and cheer on their teams. The environment and the energy surrounding the stadium makes the sports atmosphere a riveting one. Fans will remember their first game with their dads for a lifetime. It takes a lot to make a stadium a lovely environment and not all venues are created equally. These 12 stadiums in America are the best of the best when it comes to their team(s), infrastructure, and environment.
12. PNC Park: Pittsburgh Pirates
PNC Park has been the home of the Pirates since 2001, after the tear down of Three Rivers Stadium. The stadium seats nearly 40,000 and it sits right off Allegheny River. The view of downtown Pittsburgh is perfect for a ball game any time of the year. There truly isn't a bad seat in the park.
11. TD Garden: Boston Celtics and Boston Bruins
The TD Garden opened in 1995 when it replaced the original Boston Garden. The arena hosts the Boston Celtics and Boston Bruins. Boston is a proud sports town and the rich history and success of the two franchises comes alive in the arena. TD Garden has hosted Stanley Cup and NBA Finals. The Celtics and Bruins have each won 1 championship since the TD Garden opened its doors.
10. Notre Dame Stadium: Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Notre Dame Stadium has been the home of the Irish since 1930. It offers one of the best atmospheres in all of college football. Full of tradition, Notre Dame Stadium comes alive when the Irish take the field on Saturdays. The view of "Touchdown Jesus" is an added bonus for football fans.
9. Madison Square Garden: New York Kicks and New York Rangers
Madison Square Garden opened in 1968. It is the oldest arena in the National Hockey League and the second oldest in the National Basketball Association. The Rangers and Knicks have had many memorable seasons at MSG. MSG also hosted the first Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier fight in 1971.
8. Mercedes-Benz Superdome: New Orleans Saints
The Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana opened in 1975 and it was a spectacle. Saints fans always crank it up a notch in Sundays. The Dome suffered damage during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. It reopened in time for the Saints home opener in 2006. The Superdome also hosts the Allstate Sugar Bowl for college football. The Superdome has hosted 7 Super Bowls since it opened.
7. United Center: Chicago Blackhawks and Chicago Bulls
The Chicago Bulls of the NBA moved into the new "Madhouse on Madison" in 1994. The Blackhawks of the NHL moved into the United Center a year later. In the late the 90s the new stadium saw Michael Jordan and the Bulls complete another 3-peat in the NBA finals. In the 2010s, the Blackhawks won 3 Stanley Cups. The United Center is easily one of the best sports environments whenever "Chelsea Dagger" hits the crowd.
6. Wrigley Field: Chicago Cubs
Wrigley Field opened in 1914 and it is the second oldest stadium in Major League Baseball. The Chicago Cubs have called Wrigley Field home since 1916 and two years ago, won their first World Series sin 108 years. The faithful fans of the North Side have always supported their team and will continue to do so in the future.
5. Michigan Stadium: Michigan Wolverines
"The Big House" opened in 1927. Its capacity is 107,601 and is the second largest stadium in the world. The Wolverines are one of the most prominent programs in college athletics. Michigan Stadium is a strong part of the university and embodies Michigan football.
4. Rose Bowl Stadium
The Rose Bowl Stadium opened in 1922 and has hosted the Rose Bowl Game since 1923. It has also hosted the UCLA Bruins since 1982 and 5 Super Bowls. Every New Year's Day the Rose Bowl Game is one of the biggest football games of the college season. The rich history of the Rose Bowl will live on forever.
3. Arrowhead Stadium: Kansas City Chiefs
Arrowhead Stadium has been home to the Kansas City Chiefs since 1972. Over the years Chiefs fans have given it their all for their football team with everything they got. In 2014 on Monday Night Football, the crowd set a Guinness World Record for the loudest stadium. The Chiefs beat the Patriots 41-14.
2. Fenway Park: Boston Red Sox
Fenway Park has been home to the Boston Red Sox since 1912. Fenway holds the distinction as the oldest stadium in Major League Baseball. The famous "Green Monster" in left field is one of the most iconic structures in sports. The history of the park is rivaled by none in the major leagues. Boston is one of the great sports cities in America, and Fenway Park plays a large role in that.
1. Lambeau Field: Green Bay Packers
Lambeau Field has been the home of the Green Bay Packers since 1957. The venue was named after team founder Curly Lambeau in 1965. It is a true home-field advantage for the Packers. Green Bay has a 17-5 playoff record at Lambeau. Every football fan should have an opportunity to watch a football game at Lambeau. The rich history and tradition of the Packers embody what the sport is all about. There truly is no other place like the "Frozen Tundra."
When fans go to a sporting event they expect far more than a game. It's all about the experience when a game is witnessed in person. It almost feels like a movie moment when you walk through the tunnel and the stadium opens up in front of you. Ask any fan of their team and they'll tell you that there is no place they would rather be than the stadium.