The NFL will open its 2004 season on Thursday night, Sept. 9 with a one-hour pregame special – "NFL Opening Kickoff" – that will salute the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots and feature a star-studded musical lineup with performances from Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., and Jacksonville, Fla., site of Super Bowl XXXIX.
"NFL Opening Kickoff" will air from 8-9 p.m. ET on ABC and lead into the season opener between the Patriots and Indianapolis Colts at Gillette Stadium – a rematch of last season's AFC Championship Game (ABC, 9 p.m. ET). The show will air following the game in the Rocky Mountain and West Coast time zones.
2004 Kickoff Football Festival
In the week leading up to "2004 NFL Opening Kickoff" between the Indianapolis Colts and Super Bowl champion New England Patriots on Thursday, Sept. 9, area football fans will have the opportunity to play like the pros in Boston, Saturday, Sept. 4 - Monday, Sept. 6 at the free NFL Kickoff Football Festival. Thousands of fans are expected to attend the free event slated from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. on Saturday and Monday, and 12 p.m. - 6 p.m. on Sunday.
Designed to entertain the entire family, the NFL Kickoff Football Festival will include various attractions for football fans of all ages, including participatory events, clinics, and autograph sessions with select former players.
Free tickets will be distributed beginning each morning from September 4-6 at the front gates of NFL Kickoff Football Festival, located at the Fan Pier Parking Lot in South Boston.
Various instructional clinics and events will take place during the festival, such as the Pepsi Punt, Pass & Kick competition as well as cheerleading clinics with the New England Patriots Cheerleaders on Sunday and Monday.
The NFL Kickoff Football Festival aims to bring the thrill of the game to fans in a fun and interactive way. Designed to entertain, engage, and enlighten, the event puts the ball into the hands of the fans. Among the participatory football attractions are: "Run to Daylight," sponsored by Ameriquest Mortgage, where fans can try to match strides for 40 yards; "Down and Out," sponsored by Visa, where fans attempt to run a pass pattern through a maze of simulated defenders to catch a pass thrown to them by an automated machine; and "Quick Release," sponsored by Campbell's, where fans can see how the speed of their passing compares to some of the greatest (and quickest) NFL passers.
Other interactive areas include the "Field Goal Kick," sponsored by Gatorade, where fans try to score the game-winning points with a last-second field goal before simulated blocked rush in to foil the attempt; "Let it Fly," sponsored by Canon, which allows fans to put themselves in the quarterback's position, take aim downfield, and find out how far they can let it fly with a perfect spiral; and "Extra-Point Kick," sponsored by Coors, where fans can take their stance, wait for placement, and try to convert an extra point through regulation NFL uprights.
Two of the scheduled interactive elements were modeled after real football skills competitions. "Quarterback Challenge," sponsored by PlayStation, allows fans to show off their passing accuracy on special targets just like in the televised competition. In "Pepsi Punt, Pass, and Kick," participants test their football skills in a replica of the annual nationwide youth football competition.
The Football Festival will also include a Kids' Zone, which will feature pint-sized versions of the Quarterback Challenge and the extra point kick as well as a tattoo salon and a drawing area where children can color in the Kickoff event logo and take it home with them.
The NFL Kickoff Football Festival is an interactive themed event, free to the general public, running in conjunction with the NFL's 2004 season kickoff. The event is comprised of interactive games for both kids and adults where you can punt, pass, kick catch and throw footballs. There are also opportunities to interact with current NFL stars from the New England Patriots as well as past NFL legends.
The Kickoff Football Festival is to be held at Fan Pier in South Boston
Hours of Operation
Saturday, Sept. 4, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sunday, Sept. 5, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Monday, Sept. 6, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Tickets are free and available at booths adjacent to the entrance of the Kickoff Football Festival.
Player Appearance Schedule:
FREE Autographs! NFL Legends are scheduled to appear on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
NFL Sail-Off will be a boat race between two America's Cup Yachts, one adorned with the New England Patriots Logo and the other with the Indianapolis Colts occurring Saturday, September 4th. Race to coincide with high-end hospitality event featuring appearance by city government officials (including the mayor), and NFL executives.
Games & Activities
Extra Point Kick
Field Goal Kick
Punt, Pass and Kick
Let It Fly
Down and Out
Run to Daylight