Wednesday, June 9, 2004

FieldTurf unrolled at stadium; Ravens-Broncos pack sold out



By Mark Curnutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

[photo]
FieldTurf workers start the installation of the Bengals' new playing surface at Paul Brown Stadium on Tuesday. Installation could be complete by this weekend, depending on weather.
The Cincinnati Enquirer/MICHAEL SNYDER
The first rolls of dark green FieldTurf were unrolled and installed Tuesday at Paul Brown Stadium.

Starting at 10 a.m., a crew from the Montreal-based company had installed 30 yards - six strips measuring 5-by-50 yards - at midfield of the empty stadium.

Installation could be complete by this weekend, depending on weather, said Bill Connelly, Bengals business manager.

Phase 1, installation of the crushed rock sub-base surface, was completed last week. Workers are now on Phase 2, Connelly said, and Phase 3 will consist of the company brushing in 11/2 inches of a sand-rubber combination in-fill.

The strands of synthetic grass put down are 21/4 inches long, and 3/4 of an inch will be above the in-fill.

Workers started at midfield Tuesday morning, putting down one section at a time before trimming and stitching it to the next piece.

A rolling sewing machine is used to knit the pieces together, and its noise drew a swarm of cicadas around workers.

The main yard-line stripes that extend across the field are already sewn into the green background as white fibers.

The 22-yard leaping Bengal tiger that will adorn midfield also will be sewn in, at a later date.

The orange end-zone backgrounds, featuring black tiger stripes and white block letters spelling out BENGALS, also are sewn in.

SOLD OUT: Ticket packs for the Baltimore and Denver home games are sold out, the Bengals ticket office announced.

Tickets for the Ravens and Broncos games now are available only through the purchase of Bengals season tickets.

Tickets for all other Bengals home games also are available by purchasing season tickets, or by purchasing one of the remaining three ticket packages - (Sept. 19 vs. Miami and Nov. 7 vs. Dallas), (Nov. 21 vs. Pittsburgh and Dec. 26 vs. N.Y. Giants) or (Nov. 28 vs. Cleveland and Dec. 19 vs. Buffalo).

"The response we have received from our fans since the ticket packs went on sale last week (June 2) has been overwhelming," said Kevin Lane, director of ticket sales.

Season tickets and ticket packages are available by calling 621-8383 or toll-free (866) 621-8383 from outside Cincinnati.

E-mail mcurnutte@enquirer.com




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