When you first drive (or walk) by the new Bucks arena, Fiserv Forum, you can’t help but look up. In a towering, but rounded way, everything seems so massive. And up close. I know what you’re thinking, “Duh Noah, of course an NBA arena is going to look huge in person, it’s a near 130 foot tall building.” But, it just has a different feeling to it. It feels… special.
Maybe it’s because the old Bucks arena, BMO Harris (Bradley) Center, fits in with all of the other buildings downtown. The surroundings just look old and worn. The structures blend right in with everything else. Fiserv Forum pops. It stands out. You notice it. You just can’t help but look in awe. And that’s before you even walk into the building!
Once inside the Fiserv Forum, which has a capacity seating of 17,500 people, you instantly start scanning the open area. From the escalators that take you towards the top, to the horizontal screen across the back wall on the bottom floor and finally, over to the Bucks Pro Shop. Naturally, one has to browse the shop, “Just to look, just a little.” Ten minutes later, you walk out with all kinds of Cream City inspired gear and Hardwood Classic accessories.
Let’s head upstairs, shall we?
As you make your way up the stairs, or escalator, once again, your eyes start scanning all around you. Immediately you notice the original, modernized art that awaits you up top, against the walls and around every corner. There was even a lifesize deer, its body made entirely out of basketball leather and hoop netting for the antlers. Very hypnotizing.
There are various areas to grab a beer, a bite to eat and yes, purchase season tickets in a very cool, lounge like setting. The Bucks definitely knew what they were doing when they designed that little room. Closed off, with glass walls and leather wrap-around seats. A complete VIP-type experience. Among the places to eat and drink are as follows: Chik-Fil-A, Sobelman’s, Iron Grate BBQ and Gold Rush Chicken. The beer selection at the surrounding bars include everything from Miller Lite to trendy IPA’s. I will say this though, be prepared to pay. I spent about $30 on a 24 ounce beer, a burger and cheese curds. I also had not eaten all day, so it was totally worth it.
Finding your seat, made easy.
I had no problems finding my seat, with the Bucks app and the staff awaiting you by the entrance rows. I must say, as well, the staff was extremely positive and friendly, wherever I went, high fiving and offering to take any pictures of me. I felt like a VIP, even without the season tickets.
Once you sit down, in the comfortable non metal-bleacher-type seats (I’m thinking of you, Lambeau Field and Miller Park), you feel at ease. I thought to myself, and must have been transmitting those thoughts aloud, because the person next to me goes, “Pretty nice, eh?” Heck, I was just happy to have a cup holder in front of me for my beer!
Scanning the arena inside gives you that rounding, expansive, yet close knit feeling. Very intimate, but with flair. The arena is large, compact, and more so in the sense that no seat, is a bad seat. I know for a fact I will be sitting in the upper level this year, and have no qualms about it. The BMO Harris Center had these drop off, almost vertical, seats in the upper level. You legitimately had to hold onto the center rail as you walked up for fear of falling backwards and straight down into the lower level. Nosebleeds, no more!
Everything has a sleek look to it, as it should, being that it is BRAND NEW, but nonetheless, a very welcome sight. There is much more to see and do inside the arena, so I will be back very soon. Plus, the Bucks won both times I went. Always the cherry on top of the Cream City styled top.
The Milwaukee Bucks have arrived, in more ways than one this year. They have a new arena, the second best record in the Eastern Conference, and quite possibly, the MVP of the entire National Basketball Association in Giannis Antetokounmpo. A tremendous time to be a fan, indeed.