Thursday Night Lights

Disco balls are generally not what you see at a football game. In fact, disco balls are not something you see that often anywhere nowadays. But take a walk high up to the Etscorn box at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium, and you’ll see not only a disco ball being used in its full glory but also fans as far as the eye can see, squeezed tightly into the suite with the football game being played out far below. Music blares loudly, and the party is very much in full swing.

And this is every game. It’s a different way of watching the game.

“A box costs a lot of money,” explains David Etscorn. “So you might as well have a party every game and have fun. A lot of suite-holders will come around to ours and ask, ‘Well, why can’t we have our box like that?’ But here, it’s a party every game in the same way when you invite people over to your house.”

He adds: “The funny thing is listening to people walking by and saying ‘Why aren’t we in that suite?’”

The view.

The view.

The key to creating the box’s fun atmosphere has been filling it with family and friends, which allows everyone a chance to cut loose, catch up and generally have a good time.

“I don’t turn any of my friends away, and I want to make sure that they have a great time,” Etscorn says. “Also, people from the other suites, they are always stopping by. Everyone wants to go to Suite 24.”

Adds Ron Kramer, who has been to every game in the Etscorn box since the very beginning five years ago: “It’s just been a phenomenal investment for us because we have been able to bring so many family and friends here. We added some disco balls, some mirrors, and it’s been a great deal. We wanted to set it up in a very particular way. We all have our group of friends with whom we want to watch the game, and they are able to go outside and watch the game. But then there are people who want to hang out, drink, eat, talk and enjoy being together. So we feel like we have the best of both worlds.”

In fact, a walk through the suite to the balcony yields one of the best views of the arena – a great chance to the see the University of Louisville team in action.

“That’s what we’ve tried to do,” Kramer says. “Set up something where we have a party atmosphere and people can socialize, but if they want to watch the game, go outside and watch it, and it’s been very, very good for us.”

Kramer concludes: “For what it’s worth, I feel like we have a box that’s able to offer something a little bit different and a livelier atmosphere.”

Photos by CHRIS HUMPHREYS | The Voice-Tribune