The Rose Bowl – Stadium for the Immortals

The Rose Bowl – Stadium for the Immortals


Legends, heroes and immortals are stuffs of fantasy and myths but in real life all such figures come to life inside a sporting stadium. Sports are the best way one can find heroes, legends and immortals. Sporting personalities and moments allow us the chance to enjoy, live and celebrate are heroes and legends. And the theatre for such great athletes, heroes and legends to perform is known as a stadium, an outdoor building, and a cauldron where the greatest moments of sporting history are performed and lived. There are many stadiums world over which are known for their history, their size, their fans, the great sporting history that has been created in them and the teams they represent. For fans of a particular sport or team their stadium is their temple, a place where they worship their immortal players and one such stadium located in the city of Pasadena in California is called the Rose Bowl Stadium.


The Rose Bowl is an outdoor athletics stadium situated in Pasadena, Los Angeles and is the home of the football teams of University of California at Los Angeles as well as the host of the most famous football bowl game in the United States of America, the Rose Bowl football game. The stadium is a landmark in American and Californian history with the distinct honor of hosting events of two Olympics held in Los Angeles in 1934 and 1984, a Soccer World Cup Final in 1994 and Women’s Soccer World Cup Final in 1999. The stadium came up at a time when American Football was developing into a national game with great popularity and following, all over the country there soccer stadiums coming up. Los Angeles itself had its own showcase event “the tournament of roses” which was played on the New Year’s Day and known as ‘America’s New Year Celebration’ it was held for the first on January 1st, 1902 at Tournament Park. For the coming 14 year the event lost much of its sheen and was dominated by other side vents instead of Football as the game were too lopsided to draw crowd.


But in 1916, under the official name of the Rose Bowl the Football match was re-instated as the showpiece event soon it became an annual event and started drawing crowds of over 40,000 thousand on the game day. This led authorities to commission the building of a permanent stadium at Arroyo Seco some three miles south of the original Tournament Park. The designer of the stadium was Myron Hunt who was inspired form the design of the Yale Bowl in New Haven, Connecticut which was built in 1914; the stadium was originally built as a horse shoe and opened in 1922 hosting the first game between USC and Cal in October of 1922. The official opening of the stadium as the Rose Bowl though happened on January 1st, 1923. Since its opening the stadiums has undergone many renovation project which has led to the expansion of its capacity and facilities. The horse-shoe shape of the original design got converted into a full bowl in 1928 after the development of the southern end of the stadium.


After the building of the southern end the capacity of the stadium rose to around 55000 thousand, each year at the bowl game the stadium would be packed to quarters building an atmosphere which was never seen before in any American stadium. After the Second World War more expansion happened and by 1972 the stadium became the largest in USA with a capacity to hold 104,000 plus spectators for a game, from 1972 till 1997 the Rose Bowl remained the stadium with the highest capacity but was surpassed by the Michigan State University stadium which held a capacity of 109,000. From the wooden benches of the early years to the bucket seats of today, spectator comfort has come a long way for the Rose Bowl. Today the Rose Bowl stadium can host around 92000 spectators at a time with numbers touching the 94000 mark sometimes. The stadium has also been host to many other events such as rock concerts, a soccer world cup final with an attendance of 93000 and the NFL Super Bowl.


Rose Bowl stadium and its showpiece event the Rose Bowl game is considered to be the showcase of the immortals, a place where some of the defining moments of American Football’s history have been created. The Rose Bowl game which sees the participation of the two of the biggest and best teams in American College Football has captured the imagination of millions of American and is the biggest game in College football and second biggest in American Football after the ‘Super bowl’.  In 2014, the stadium held its 100th Rose Bowl game which was eventually won by Michigan State University Spartans, the most successful team at Rose Bowl games have been the University of South California, Michigan State University and the Washington State University. The Rose Bowl game is an annual showcase of the greatest talent there is in American college football, it represents an integral part of America’s sporting culture and its heritage.

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