Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Seen outside the Rose Garden Arena, January 19, 2013

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Before the basketball game, I walked by the crowd lined up at various doors as the awaited the arrival of 6 p.m. These doors are the main ones at the south end of the arena. The door I use is just to the right of the right edge of this photo, maybe 12 feet away. I exit usually at the right-most of the doors in this photo where the person in the red and white jacket waits, unless I remember to go out another doorway which is usually devoid of a crowd and is also to the right of these. I don't go out the door I use as my entrance because it is a single door which opens onto a one-way ramp with a railing--a total bottleneck. 

The upper level circular area is where folks who have paid to eat at the pre-game buffet because their more expensive ticket includes the food go to sit with their food. I've been there a couple of times when the Blazers had special events for season ticket holders. The view is pretty good and would be better if the grain elevators were not right across from the arena. However, I'm sure that business-wise, for the Willamette River, the grain elevators are a good thing. Can't run an economy on the whim of professional basketball. 

Ah. The entry process--looking in your bag/purse after you set it on a narrow folding table, going through the metal detector, being wanded if you set off the metal detector, and having your ticket scanned--has begun. Tonight I'm on my way to a different entrance than the one I described above because I wanted to pick up my LaMarcus Aldridge NBA All-Star bobble head--the Rose Garden Arena season-ticket-holder help center is at the north end of the arena, so I decided to go get it before heading for my seat. 

You can see the folks at the tables in the eating area on the second level. I'm sure it has some sort of official name, but I can't remember for sure. The first time I went up there for a season ticket holder event, I ate juicy and tender roasted buffalo, carved from a huge hunk of meat and placed onto my plate by the server.   

By the way, the smoking balcony which I find troubling because of its proximity to my season ticket seat and the way the hall between me and the bathroom fills with cigarette smoke, especially at halftime, is beneath the pointed roof you see in the second photo. When it's time to renew my tickets next season, I'll be looking for somewhere else on the south end of the arena, somewhere affordable and away from that smoking balcony. I've complained several times when the smoke has come out into the arena so that I could smell it at my actual seat. The floor manager to whom I gave my info said to complain every single time I feel that the smoke is overwhelming. Well, if I didn't have to wait for him out in the smoke, I'd certainly be doing that!

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