So perhaps you’ve heard of a little place called The Star in Frisco? Quite a bit lately.
Over the last week and a half, fans have flocked to The Ford Center at The Star for the opportunity to get up close and personal with America’s Team.
It was one year ago that the Dallas Cowboys opened their World Headquarters in Frisco with a promise they would hold at least part of their preseason training camp there in the future. Jerry Jones Sr., Owner, President and General Manager of the Dallas Cowboys, says the vision was always about making the players and the Cowboys brand extremely accessible to fans.
We learned a long time ago that it wasn’t about the 100,000 people that are in the stadium,” said Jerry Jones. “Only 7% of fans have ever been inside of an NFL stadium.”
The Star in Frisco, with its Cowboys-branded experiences everywhere you turn, gives fans the touch and feel engagement that connects them to the team. When a child can watch Dak Prescott throw a pass across the practice field, then step outside and do the same on the turf of the Ford Center Plaza, his confidence grows.
You read about it. You see it on television. But when you touch it, you can do it too. That’s what this center is all about,” said Jerry Jones.
At the six open practices this week and last, fans of all ages enjoyed interactive vendor booths, energetic music and shared enthusiasm outside of the Ford Center. Kids ran across the turf, clad in player jerseys, throwing passes to one another. Fans took selfies in front of the 2270 sq. foot exterior video board, where the team’s practice was broadcasting live. Inside the Ford Center, fans cheered as Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, Dez Bryant and Jason Witten ran onto the field. Music blared over multiple speakers and attendees watched attentively as the team warmed up and began their practice.
Frisco resident Michelle Williams attended an open practice with her son and says the experience was fantastic.
I love the fact that it felt so welcoming for families. It wasn’t overcrowded and the event was very well organized. We enjoyed the game booths and the convenience of the shops and restaurants that were just steps away from The Star.”
A non-fan might think attending a team’s practice is akin to watching paint dry, but not when you have athletes like Dak and Dez on the field. Kids held signs hoping to grab the attention of their favorite player. Seasoned fans took note of the players’ performance, with hopeful anticipation of a road to the Superbowl.
Players, coaches, and members of Cowboys management took the time to sign autographs and snap a few pictures with attendees at the end of practice. Those who were able to connect with the team in this way say it’s a little surreal that the entire experience was free and open to the public.
Frisco, you have been a magnificent teammate,” Jerry Jones said at a ceremony this week. “We’re looking forward to working with you years into the future.”