University of Washington home football games are usually saved for Slaed (dad & husband) to have time away with his buddies. While we don’t have season tickets, he does get to go to a handful of games each season and looks forward to the fun all year.
This season though with Bergen being a little older, and the stadium being newly updated, we wanted to make a point to go as a family. We live fairly close, within just a few miles, so why not take the time to cheer on our Purple and Gold Huskies.
It figures though that when the big day of the game arrived (we strategically chose a 4pm starting game) it was raining. Not just a nice, normal, misty Seattle rain. No. We couldn’t be that lucky. It was raining buckets. Cats and Dogs. Huskies & Wildcats really, since we were playing Arizona. Just pouring.
Of course we had grand ideas of actually walking all the way from our house to the stadium. We didn’t completely abandon that plan though, and instead drove as close as we could get before the no-parking-on-game-day rules were enforced. Then with Bergen in the backpack carrier and umbrellas in hand (and to think we thought we might not need them!) we made the trek, which turned out to be a little less than 2 miles.
Despite the down right miserable conditions, we managed to stay relatively warm and dry and thus have nothing but happy memories of attending Bergen’s first college football game.
We had to be prepared though and I think we made some smart choices, even if you think we might be crazy (or foolish?) to subject ourselves and our toddler to such an experience.
1. Dress Appropriately. Unfortunately we had to take team spirit (and fashion) completely out of the equation, and just dress to stay warm and protected from the rain. Lucky Bergen got to wear his Oakiwear rainsuit, which many adults coveted, with fleece layers underneath and rain boots. Slaed and I both wore rain pants and rain jackets layered with long underwear.
Shoes are also super important to consider because once your feet start to get wet, no matter how prepared you are with your clothing, you’ll be uncomfortable (and unhappy) in no time. With all the walking we had to do this took some extra thought, but Slaed’s goretex hiking shoes and my Bog rainboots worked well.
Specific Gear Recommendations:
- Children’s rain suits from Oakiwear
- Western Chief Insulated Rain boots for kids
- Precip Rain Pants from Marmot
- Bog Insulated Rain boots
- Goretex Hiking/Trail Shoes from the North Face
2. Don’t Push It. I’m glad we didn’t just abandon our seats all together because getting to watch the marching band and opening excitement of the players running on to the field was thrilling However, since our seats were not covered, we took in the experience of being close to the action for a quarter or so, but then took a break.
3. Warm Food and Drinks. What a difference a nice, hot cup of coffee makes after enduring the rain for a couple of hours. If you’re not into caffeine, there’s bound to be decaf, and if you’re not into coffee, there’s gotta be hot chocolate! We also got to warm up with some pre-game gumbo at our friend’s tailgate. What a treat. Even better, pack your own thermos of warm goodness! We’re never that prepared, but I love the idea.
4. Enjoy the Stadium Away from Your Seats. I love exploring stadiums, ballparks, arenas, etc. The designers put a lot of work into creating these sporting complexes. There’s often art, history, and just fun little touches that make the place unique. Checking out these aspects of the stadium is a great thing to do while you get some respite from the rain.
5. Retreat to the Nosebleeds. Once we warmed up and explored the stadium for a bit, we were ready to continue watching the game we came to see. Luckily, many of our fellow attendees decided not to stick around, and there were plenty of open seats way up high. Though the nosebleeds often get a bad rap, I loved this option. It game us a bird’s eye view of the football action, a view of Lake Washington, and plenty of room to spread out. Oh yeah, and the seats were covered and protected from the rain!
Who are you cheering on this fall? Do you dare attend a game in the rain?
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