By Earl Heath, Contributing Sports Writer
There were screams of joy and smiling faces, many with raised arms as Ram fans entered So-Fi Stadium for the first time. They are the die-hards that live with every down of the team. They are the nurse, the construction worker, the real estate person, the businessman and women.
Because of COVID-19 they were all cheated out of a chance to cheer on the Rams live in Their House. The “RAMS HOUSE.”
Los Angeles was one of the California teams not allowed to have people in the stands last season.
“I thought I was going to lose my mind,” said Reggie Ellis. “I understood the reason why but I was still pissed.” He and his wife Martine have been Ram fans for more than fifty-years.
He’s a graduate of nearby Washington Prep and she’s a Carson High Alum. She’s also a solid team member of West Shores Realty, one of the most prestigious real estate companies in the greater Los Angeles Area.
The Ellis’s like so many others have been craving to attend a live game for several months, now as they sat in their seats and watched as the Oculus 4 sided Video Board played music while showing games highlights from last season. Ram Cheerleaders were also doing routines.
“Were excited to welcome our Season Ticket Members to So-Fi Stadium so they can experience firsthand the iconic building that Stan Kroenke envisioned for our fans, our teams and our city,” said Rams COO Kevin Demoff. “It’s a Stadium designed for them and Los Angeles and we cannot wait to see them bring the Rams House to life”
Times were staggered beginning at 9:00 AM as seat holders received complimentary tickets online. By days end approximately 35 thousand fans had visited the stadium and were permitted to stay for an hour.
All guest were required to wear mask and stay as close to the section where their seats were located to help with social distancing.
“Ain’t nothing like being at a Rams game,” said Tony Deleon of Pico Rivera. He’s been a fan since the seventies. He has purchased seven season seats for himself and family. “We supported them before they even moved to Anaheim.”
Deleon was wearing an Aaron Donald 99 jersey surrounded by his family taking in the sounds of the stadium. “This place is great and I’m really happy about being able to the finance the seats,” he added.
We as a country are coming off a pandemic many people were out of work and some just starting back to work. The Rams understand this and they have created financing plans to assist fans who wanted to purchase season seats.
“We want everyone to be able to come to the Stadium. It’s built for all fans no matter what background or where they’re from,” stated Demoff. “Some people have been waiting for three years to actually get in the place.”
Located at Hollywood Park in the City of Inglewood. So-Fi Stadium part of a 300-acre sports and entertainment destination. It is literally “The house that Kroenke built” seats 70,000 but is expandable to 100,000 or more with 260 luxury suites and more than 13,000 premium seats.
It is the largest Stadium in the NFL and the first indoor outdoor stadium. It is set to host Super Bowl LVI on February 13, 2022. That will be followed by the College Football National Championship game in 2023.
Demoff summed it up best: “I’ve walked through this building hundreds of times without fans and now to see how it’s going to be. We miss the fans and looking at some of the faces today, they can see this is where they belong. “