//photos by Travis Gibson
You've probably heard about the new changes to EverBank Field: giant HD video boards, pools and cabanas—it was even discussed on the Colbert Report (we won't talk about how some people are feeling about that). Jax Mag was invited to check out the new construction first hand last Tuesday in a media tour that took us up close and personal with some of the improvements (and the Jags themselves).
First up, we were treated to some samples of the new and locally-sourced food that'll be available this season at the stadium: the Bold City Burger, piadina classico (a flatbread sandwich with lots of greens), Cowford's Chicken Tenders (freshly-breaded real chicken), chicken and waffles (technically a sandwich), Mayport Shrimp and a lobster sandwich. Those last two items will only be available in the club seating areas and at the pool cabanas, but the rest can be found at several food service spots around the stadium.
We learned a lot about what's coming this season at the stadium; it's not just pools. Field-level seating (the NFL equivalent of courtside), bar rail seating at the north end zone area, an expanded State Farm Fan Cave, are all new additions to look forward to. The cabanas, however, are certainly the coolest: $250 per seat per game gets you exclusive access to the new spas, relaxing lounge furniture, TVs, and all-inclusive food and beverages. The cabanas can also be rented for parties of 20 to 140.
Some new ticket options have also been introduced for the upcoming season. A unique three-game ticket pack is $99, and will get you into either the New York Giants or Pittsburgh Steelers game, as well as any other two home games. Season ticketholders will be pleased to get more for their money this year as networking events, kids' clinics, on-field access and more are part of the options now being offered.
Of course, the biggest improvement are the enormous video boards. When we saw them, one was about halfway done and the other was just getting started. But they are breathtakingly huge—and they'd have to be, since they've earned the title of largest in the world.
We were assured the boards would be finished by next month's soccer game and Carrie Underwood concert, during which they're scheduled to be unveiled.
It's all looking great—I'm even sold on the pools—but whether it'll be great for the Jags or for the city, well, only time will tell. It's certainly shaping up to be a one-of-a-kind stadium. At the very least, those buried in snow up north will be longing for the Jacksonville sunshine when they see people lounging in the Jaguars' pools well into December (and, here's hoping, into playoff season).