This weekend marks the start of a new tradition. Greyhounds will come out to christen the new stadium, which has been highly anticipated for years, and will join with the Portales community in welcoming the addition. Many have considered what the new stadium will bring to the school and the community, and are excited to see it all play out.
Measuring the tradition of the Blackwater Draw stadium against this new era brings up a rich and authentic history that will be continued in the new stadium, only now fans will just need to cross the street to get to the game. That has been the focus going forward, with Draco Miller, the Director of Stadium Operations, emphasizing the new traditions that the school wants to bring to the stadium.
One exciting new stadium feature is tailgating. This event will give the student body and the community an opportunity to come together and celebrate the team and get excited for the game. The school is welcoming fans to bring out grills, get their friends together, and have fun in the parking lot preceding the game.
There will also be a new feature called the “Dawg Walk”. During this, the Greyhound football team will walk to the stadium from their field house. It is a tradition that many are excited about and Miller hopes that it will inspire fans to march along with the team cheering them on as they prepare for the game, creating a force that will carry with them into the stadium.
Before the game, there will be a mini-concert in the plaza presented by the Greyhound Sound Marching Band in order to pump up spirit as the audience makes their way into the stadium.
All aspects have been considered, and attention has been paid specifically to ensure the preservation and upholding of the tradition that the Greyhounds have spent decades building at Blackwater Draw.
Director of Athletics Greg Waggoner stated that one of the coolest new traditions that will be brought in the stadium is a “Blackwater Rock”. As the team is entering into the stadium, there will be a Blackwater Rock that the team will touch, bringing in a new tradition that pays respect to the old. So though Eastern New Mexico University Athletics is moving into this new time with exciting opportunities to connect with the school and community, they will always carry with them the tradition of Blackwater Draw and the teams of the past who built the traditions and determined what it truly means to be a Greyhound.