New reserved section sold out, some traditional reserved seating still available

Published 1:11 am Wednesday, August 29, 2018

When it comes to superstitions about sitting in a certain spot for Friday night football at Andalusia High School, perhaps no one can top Bulldog super-fan Marianne Harper Thomason.

“Ever since I could remember, we were sitting in our old reserved seats,” Thomason said.

Even Marianne Harper Thomason, shown below as the first in line for her seat at last year’s playoff game, agreed to change seats. She is, however, superstitious and slightly anxious about moving. Note that she arrived so early for that game last year, she had pizza delivered to the gate.

She was so serious about not bringing bad luck by moving, when the Bulldogs hosted home games in the playoffs in 2016 and 2017, she was first in line at the stadium gate and stood in line for hours to make sure she got her seat. She even had pizza delivered to the waiting line.

Still, she decided to move to the new, upper-level reserved seats that were added to the stadium this summer.

“I am a lifelong Bulldog fan,” Thomason said. “So I decided to go ahead and enjoy the advantages of the new seats, but it is a little scary. I have gotten used to being next to my friends and being in my spot.”

Thomason said that it making a decision to change was hard.

“But now we are excited to continue the tradition of attending games in our new seats,” she said.

There were approximately 314 new reserved seats added to make an upper level in the stadium, and according to AHS office secretary Gloria Adams, the new area is sold out.

“The top is completely filled,” Adams said. “But there are still (reserved) seats in the bottom level that are open.”

Count Chrissie Duffy among those who decided to try a new spot.

“We always want to support the school whenever there is an opportunity like this,” the Andalusia Chamber of Commerce director said. “Now we have a great view to watch football, but we did it more importantly to support the school.”

Bulldog fan Melanie Day said that her husband, Dr. Tim Day, made the decision to make their move to the upper level.

“He always talked about how he wanted to be higher up,” Day said. “So once the opportunity came he went ahead and got the seats. We are so excited to watch football Friday night in our new seats.”

The man behind the original plan to have reserved seating in the AHS stadium was Jerry Andrews.

“When Ed Richardson was principal we went to a bunch of different games and saw that they had reserved seating in their stadiums,” Andrews said. “It made sense to me to have reserved seating and have it where fans pay for a whole season and get their own spot, so that is how it started.”

Andrews said that the idea was that reserved seating would also increase ticket sales. Like many other Bulldog fans, he’s moving up.

“I am very excited for this weekend and to see all of the renovations to the stadium,” Andrews said. “We got seats in the front row of the upper level section and the thing that I am looking forward to the most is seeing our amazing band.”

Andalusia Fire Chief Russell McGlamory said he actually went to the stadium to see the new seats before deciding to move to the upper level.

“I went to check the seats out before deciding to get them,” McGlamory said. “They still had a few available and the view was great so I knew it was the right decision to get them. I absolutely cannot wait until Friday night.”

Though the new seats may be tempting, not everyone wanted to change.

Tara Dalton decided to stay in what she calls the “rowdy” section.

“I like the freedom of not completely staying in my assigned seat,” Dalton said. “Because it is not actually a seat like in the upper level. Everyone sitting next to me can scoot together during the winter and spread out during the summer games.”

Dalton said that the lower level has a lot of fun and that is why she decided to stay in her original reserved seating.

“We have much more fun in the lower level,” Dalton said. ‘All my friends are there, and I can see the field fine, I’m high enough to enjoy the game.”

School board member Amy Dugger said that she is a creature of habit when it comes to her seat.

“I have been in my reserved seating since 2006,” Dugger said. “My parents can walk in and go straight to their seats and all of my friends are all around me.”

Dugger said that she is beyond excited for the game on Friday night.

“A lot of planning has gone into the whole renovation so I am ready to see the finished project,” Dugger said. “I am thrilled for our kids to be able to play and enjoy the new stadium.”

Adams said that there are still some reserved seats available in the lower level. Each seat is $78, which covers admission to all six home games, but does not include play off games.

Any one interested in purchasing a reserved seat can contact the Andalusia High School main office at 334-222-7569.