If your birthday is this Saturday, you’ll be able to watch the Vancouver Whitecaps’ home opener for free.
It’s only natural, given the first game of the season is taking place Saturday, February 29 — a day that comes along once every four years — against Sporting Kansas City at BC Place.
To claim your tickets, you’ll need to send proof of your date of birth (like a photo of a valid BC Driver’s Licence or BC ID card) to [email protected].
The team says it will email all successful applicants, and you’ll need to present the same ID at will call on game day.
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The Whitecaps are looking to take a big leap forward this year, after a disastrous 2019 season on and off the pitch.
In an effort to turn the team around, the Whitecaps enter 2020 with a new CEO, a new sporting director, and a new star player.
Saturday will also mark the debut of a new tradition, with players arriving at the stadium together. The team bus will park outside Terry Fox Plaza at the intersection of Robson and Beatty Street 90 minutes prior to kickoff, with fans encouraged to greet their soccer heroes.
“Having the right mentality starts from the time we arrive at the stadium,” said Axel Schuster, Whitecaps FC sporting director. “We will come to the stadium together, united as a team and with our fans, and we will bring that same mentality on the pitch.”
The Whitecaps pre-game experience also includes a pre-game party at Terry Fox Plaza, featuring music, games, family fun entertainment, and player autograph signings.
“We are all a part of creating this winning culture,” added CEO Mark Pannes. “This is a tremendous opportunity to show support for our team and build the excitement for kickoff. Coming together with our fans at stadium arrival will be a big part of our home pitch advantage. It starts on Saturday, so come join us and be a part of it.”
Also new to BC Place this season are new security measures for what the team says will be “smoother entry” into the stadium. BC Place is introducing walk-through metal detectors, replacing hand-wand metal detectors which were introduced last year. Walk-through metal detectors have been in place across the street at Rogers Arena since 2015.
The new system should improve the speed of entry, which has been an issue for fans in the past.
Fans will not have to remove personal items such as mobile phones, watches, belts, or jackets before walking through the metal detectors, unless requested by venue staff, the Whitecaps say. No bags larger than 14″x 14″ x 6″ are permitted into the stadium, while bags under that size will be inspected prior to entry.
Saturday’s match kicks off at 7:30 pm, with gates opening 30 minutes earlier than usual at 6 pm.