If you're heading out to Arizona for the Patriots season opener this weekend, you'll need a list of things to do, sights to see and places to eat. Here is just some of what the Phoenix-Glendale area has to offer.
GO TO THE GAME
A steadfast option for seats at the season opener is the NFL Ticket Exchange. It is also worth checking out the Arizona Cardinals website for tickets and game day information at University of Phoenix Stadium.
If you can't make it to the game, Toso's Sports Bar & Grill (2401 W. Union Hills Dr., Phoenix; 602-896-8676) is a game day hot-spot for New England Patriots Fan Club of Arizona. The club will be hosting a mixer event at Toso's on Friday, Sept. 9 at 6 p.m. It's open to the public and allows Patriots fans from all over hang out and chat about their team. For more information, check out the Patriots Tailgate Facebook page. Uptown Alley (13525 N. Litchfield Rd., Surprise; 623-975-7529) has something for everyone. With a sports theater featuring the night's big games, bowling, laser tag and more, Uptown Alley is a place to catch the game and have some fun afterwards, as well.
While there are chain restaurant options near University of Phoenix Stadium, the area also offers an array of restaurants to help visitors get a taste of the local flavor. Bobby Q (8501 N. 27th Ave., Phoenix; 602-995-5982) offers classic barbeque favorites, including steak, ribs and burgers, as well as a family-friendly atmosphere. Pizzeria Bianco in Heritage Square (623 E. Adams St., Phoenix; 602-258-8300) has been a local favorite for more than 20 years. The artisanal pizzeria is a popular spot, but you can grab a drink at Bar Bianco next door if there is a wait. For some quick and casual seafood dining, check out Oscar's Pier 83 (18589 N. 59th Ave., Glendale; 602-843-6820), and for fresh Mexican food, Anaya's (9240 North 43rd Ave., Glendale; 623-243-2504) offers a vibrant atmosphere.
If staying close to the University of Phoenix Stadium is your priority, Glendale offers a number of hotels for visitors. Comfort Suites University of Phoenix Stadium (9824 Camelback Rd. Glendale; 623-271-9005) is less than two miles to the stadium, as its name suggests. The Renaissance Phoenix Glendale Hotel and Spa (9495 W. Coyotes Blvd, Glendale; 623-937-3700) and Staybridge Suites Phoenix-Glendale (9340 W. Cabela Dr., Glendale; 623-842-0000) are both less than a mile from the game-day action. If you want to hit Arizona like a local, check out Airbnb for deals on places to stay.
Arizona is home to natural wonders. A trip to Grand Canyon National Park is just more than a three hour drive north of University of Phoenix Stadium and would be more than worth the trip if you have an extra day. For hikes a bit closer to the stadium, Camelback Mountain in Phoenix has beautiful views from the top. If you're up for an adventure, you can try tubing on Salt River less than an hour outside of Phoenix. To escape the Arizona heat, you can hit the museum scene, including the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. Admission to the museum is free after 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The new OdySea Aquarium is still celebrating its grand opening, and there are festivities going on through Sept. 25. The aquarium offers daily Q&A sessions with experts, interactive experiences and special exhibits.
Do you have advice for fans hitting the road for an upcoming away game? Share it with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.