I have been thinking about this for a while now and I decided that its about time to post it. What I am going to suggest may very likely be laughed out of Dicks Sporting Goods Park. Last week Ben wrote about the problem that has become of the fan culture within DSG and Colorado Rapids fans. In this article I will make a suggestion as to one thing that may help the overall feel of games at DSGP.
GET RID OF THE SUPPORTERS TERRACE!
There I said it. It is somewhat of a load off my chest. Now don't get me wrong, when the supporters terrace first came along I was happy to see it. At first I thought that having a space for the more vocal supporters among the fans to lead songs and chants would be a good thing. And for the first couple of years it was. But now I think that the terrace is partly to blame for the toxic fan culture.
This year, I have spent about half of the games in the terrace, and although for the most part people are warm and gracious to each other, there is also a feeling that the two sides of the terrace do not get along which leads to poor leading of songs and chants. For groups that claim to be the biggest supporters of the Rapids there looks to be less and less people in the terrace for every game (unless its Real Salt Lake).
Like Ben said in his article there is a feeling amongst fans, rightly or wrongly, that there are true fans and other fans. Part of this feeling unfortunately seems to be coming from members of the supporters groups that populate the terrace. Again, rightly or wrongly, there is a division amongst fans in the terrace and fans in the rest of DSGP.
So what am I suggesting here? It is definitely NOT that we get rid of the supporters groups. I love the passion that they have brought in the past and hopefully will continue to bring. What I am suggesting is that supporters groups get moved to other parts of the park. Put one in the south stands and one in the west stands. That along with Class VI in the east stands could lead a better overall fan environment. Then instead of a small amount of singing coming from one side of the park there will be singing coming from 3 sides, and hopefully with a little coordination amongst the groups all three will be singing the same songs at the same time and eventually the whole stadium will be singing all at once.
What do you think? How can the Rapids help to promote a better overall fan experience at Dicks Sporting Goods Park?