We have been writing (and sharing some of the pictures and videos we have taken) all week about our experiences in and around the campus of the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana.
Today we quickly (because it has been a very long day already and tomorrow is game day … another long day) write about our activities on the Friday on campus before the football game vs Boston College. It rained very heard during the night and rain was forecasted for most of the day. However, we were very fortunate and managed to stay out of the rain the entire day.
Initially, we went to Notre Dame stadium. On Fridays before a Fighting Irish Saturday home football game, fans can enter two areas of the stadium.
First, the statues of Lou Holtz and Ara Parseghian are inside the gates. When I asked why these two statues are inside Notre Dame Stadium while the statues to Knute Rockne, Frank Leahy, and Moose Krause are outside the stadium, we were told that it was because Mr. Holtz and Mr. Parseghian are still living. Interesting.
Today, being a football Friday for the Irish, the gates are opened and fans are allowed for 4 hours to see them. So, this was the first thing which Harvey and I did.
Next, the stadium gates to the tunnel are opened as well on Football Fridays, so naturally Harvey and I went here next. It really is a view that fans who are only at the game on Saturday do not see; being able to walk down the tunnel and stop an inch before the field underneath the Goal Post is quite a thrill.
As well, the banners from all of the football National Championships are hung from the ceiling of the tunnel. Here is a collection of pictures of the banners and of inside the stadium.
Next, we had a couple of hours before our next scheduled activity so we went to the Snite Museum of Art which had a very nice collection of sculptures and paintings. Then we went to the Legends of Notre Dame for lunch and a beverage. It is right on campus just below Notre Dame Stadium.
There we met Perry and his wife Barbara from Minnesota. Perry and Barbara had put two children through Notre Dame and now returned most years for football weekends. They were really nice.
Then we went to the Main Administration building to see and listen to the Trumpets In The Dome, where the trumpets from the Notre Dame Marching Band play both the Alma Matter and the Notre Dame Fight Song. It is called the Trumpets In The Dome because it is the Main Administration Building on the campus of the University which has the Golden Dome and the band members play these two songs inside, underneath the dome.
They do this on Football Fridays around 4 o’clock and again on Football Saturdays, with the latter seeing the band members wearing their uniforms and performing on the 3rd floor of the Dome.
Below is a 5 minute video taken from the 4th floor showing the band members entering and then playing these two songs.
Following this we watched some short performances of the Notre Dame Marching Band outside the front of the same main Administration Building. This was followed by attending the Pep Rally at the Irish Green. Golden Tate Barry Gallup Jr. and Ian Williams, along with Ron Powlus were the speakers. Below is a short clip showing part of the Pep Rally.
Lastly, Harvey and I attended the Knights of Columbus Smoker. No, there is no smoking going on. It is simply a nice way to end the day inside with good food (brats, chilli, etc.), beverages and speeches from invited guests. This evening we had, amongst several speakers, one about a documentary made of the Irish preparation and participation in the Japan Bowl earlier in the year. This included some video clips of Coach Holtz preparing the team as well as of game action.
Additionally, one of the reporters from Irish Illustrated fielded a question and answer session from his perspective covering the Irish football team for the past 9 years. It was very enjoyable. If you are looking for something to do after the Pep Rally, I highly recommend the Knights of Columbus Smoker.
Tomorrow it is game day.
GO IRISH! BEAT BC!
To read about and see our experiences on a Football Saturday in South Bend at the University of Notre Dame campus, simply select this link to Game Day On Campus.
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