College Football Hall of Fame promises to ‘make a difference’ in Atlanta

ATLANTA | The College Football Hall of Fame has had many incarnations from a New York brownstone to Cincinnati to South Bend, Ind.

Now, Atlanta takes over — and it’s going to do things a little bit differently when it opens its doors on Aug. 23.

“This is not just a building of old jerseys and helmets and that kind of stuff,” National Football Foundation President and CEO Steve Hatchell said Thursday during a news conference. “We’ve had that. We’re going to make a difference in football. We’re going to show people the sport matters.”

The attraction, which will be called the College Football Hall of Fame and Chick-fil-A Fan Experience, will blend memorabilia with multimedia exhibits, Atlanta Hall Management announced Thursday. It will open its doors the week before the Georgia Dome hosts an Ole Miss-Boise State matchup and Alabama and West Virginia in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game.

The 94,256-square-foot facility, which is within walking distance from Centennial Olympic Park and the Georgia Dome, includes a 45-yard football field and interactive media wall.

“It’s totally different. That’s why it’s hard to express how exciting this is,” Hatchell said. “This captures history, it captures a look at the future, it captures the ability to bring young people through here.”

But it’s not all bells and whistles. There will be 500 pieces of football
memorabilia included in the exhibits.

“This is fun, celebratory, fully immersive attraction that takes the college football fan into the game as never before,” Hall of Fame President and CEO John Stephenson said in a release.

The $68 million attraction broke ground in 2009 and was funded almost entirely by private donations. They’re hoping to have 500,000 annual visitors, Stephenson said.

Tickets and memberships will be available on Aug. 1 through cfbhall.com. Tickets will range from $16.99-$19.99.

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