The Pittsburgh Steelers are encouraging fans to arrive early to enjoy the many activities surrounding game day at Heinz Field for Thursday's preseason finale versus the Carolina Panthers. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. and all gates will open at 5:30 p.m.
Fans are reminded that the Coors Light Kickoff and Rib Festival, which runs from August 28 through September 1 opens at Noon on Thursday. Admission is free, and there will be numerous activities around Heinz Field including free concerts, national rib vendors and much more throughout the weekend.
For all home games in 2014, the Steelers will have a 50/50 Raffle with proceeds benefiting local charities. There will be 50/50 kiosks and personnel throughout the stadium. Tickets go on sale two hours prior to kickoff and will end during the game. One fan will take home 50 percent of the game's collection while the other half will go to the United Way. The winning ticket will be announced during the game and the winners' list will be posted on Steelers.com for 30 calendar days after the game.
Fans are encouraged to stop at Steelers Tailgates at Stage AE, presented by Coors Light, as many great prizes will be given away. Admission is free and the doors will open at 4 p.m. WDVEand the Steelers Radio Networkwill also be live at Stage AE for their pregame and postgame shows.
As part of USA Youth Football Month, youth football players will participate in player introductions, coin toss and presenting our nation's colors. In addition, all helmets will feature a sticker dedicated to youth football month, all in an effort to spread the word about the Heads Up Football Initiative.
The NFL Bag Policy that was implemented at the start of the 2013 season will be in effect for all Steelers' home games.
Heinz Field encourages fans to not bring in any type of bags. However, the following style and size bag, package or container at stadium plaza areas, stadium gates or when approaching queue lines of fans awaiting entry into the stadium:
- Bags that are clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and do not exceed 12" x 6" x 12." (Official NFL team logo clear plastic tote bags are available through steelers.com, at all Steelers Sideline Stores and at nflshop.com), or
- One-gallon clear plastic freezer bag (Ziploc bag or similar).
- Logo on bag cannot exceed 4.5" tall by 3.4" wide.
- Small clutch purses, approximately the size of a hand, or 4.5" x 6.5" with or without a handle or strap, may be carried into the stadium along with one of the clear bag options.
- An exception will be made for medically necessary items after proper inspection at each gate.
- Diapers and wipes can be carried in a clear bag, however diaper bags are not permitted.
- Each member of a family, including children, will be able to carry an approved clear bag and a clutch purse.
- The PA Army National Guard will distribute clear bags to all fans who enter the nearby parking lots.
The Steelers 1st-IN-GOAL promotion, sponsored by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, will allow fans who enter Heinz Field early on game days the opportunity to win exclusive prizes from the team. The first 25,000 fans who enter the stadium will be given a scratch-off card, and all 25,000 fans will be winners. Fans will have the opportunity to win Steelers gift cards (Steelers Sideline stores), pregame field passes, concert tickets (Stage AE), free in-stadium food and drinks, a PG Store offer, an official 9Forty League Cap (New Era), overnight stays (Nemacolin Woodlands Resort and Spa), free coffee (GetGo) and admission to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
There will also be live music in a variety of areas prior to kickoff. Lava Gamewill perform at Stage AE, The Flow Bandwill perform in the FedEx Great Hall and Abby Abbondanzawill perform on the main concourse.
The Steelers are participating all season in the "Let's Tackle Recycling"campaign. At every Steelers home game, the Sports & Exhibition Authority (SEA) and its partners are collecting aluminum cans, glass containers and plastic bottles and cups at tailgating parties in the parking lots outside of Heinz Field. The "Let's Tackle Recycling" campaign is sponsored by the SEA in partnership with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Heinz Field, Waste Management, Three Rivers Power Sweep and Alco Parking.
The following are additional highlights for fans for Thursday's game:
- The Steelers will unveil plans of the WPIAL Champions at Heinz Field, Presented by UPMC on the West Main Concourse at 5:15 p.m.
- The Terrible Towel Twirl will be led by the four Athletic Directors*of reigningWPIAL Champions: Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic High School,South Fayette High School,West Allegheny High School and Central Catholic High School*.
- The*Pittsburgh Steeline Drum Line *will perform during pregame and will continue throughout the stadium during the game.
- As part ofUSA Youth Football Month, the*Civil Air Patrol Allegheny County Honor Guard *will present our nation's colors.
- Highway Run, who will perform at theCoors Light Kickoff and Rib Festivalon Monday, will perform Thursday's National Anthem. * *
- PA National Guard member,Sergeant Doug Mignot, will be honored as theATI Hometown Hero.
- At halftime, three contestants will kick field goals for the right to present theUnited Waywith their first donation of their 2014 campaign.
- TheDick's Sporting Goodsyouth football halftime contest will featurePenn Hills *andGateway*.