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Wofford College hosts Carolina Panthers for 11th Year

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Spartanburg once again will celebrate the Carolina Panthers 2005 training camp at Wofford College with a community party on Friday, Aug. 5, (rescheduled from July 29) at Barnet Park in downtown. Festivities are set to begin at 7 p.m., and will include performances by the Top Cat cheerleaders and Panthers mascot Sir Purr.

Panthers Party ’05 is being presented by Wofford, in conjunction with the City of Spartanburg, the Spartanburg Convention & Visitors Bureau, and Team Spartanburg sports council. Spartanburg 1400 (WSPG-AM) is a media sponsor of the event.

“Spartanburg is excited and proud to host the Carolina Panthers for the 11th year this year, and this will be a celebration of what that means to the community,” says Mandy Merck, director of special events and festivals for the City of Spartanburg. “We do not anticipate having Panthers players participating in the event – after all, they come to Spartanburg to work hard to get ready for what we hope will be another Super Bowl season. This event is designed for the community to celebrate having the team here and to kick off a great summer training camp season.”

The community celebration is free and open to the public, with food and drink available for purchase. There will be prizes and giveaways as well as games and other activities for children and adults alike. It also will feature highlights of the Panthers’ 2004 season on a large video screen, and fireworks.

The Panthers held their first practice at Wofford on Saturday, July 30, at 9:10 a.m., with a second practice at 3:10 p.m. Training camp will continue through Wednesday, Aug. 24.

Wofford recently was recognized by Sports Illustrated’s Web site, SI.com, as the 5th best training camp location in the NFL. In his “Inside the NFL” column, SI.com’s Peter King said, “Shake the hands. Meet the players. Fans are no farther than 10 or 15 yards from the sidelines during practice, and if the workout is in Wofford's refurbished stadium, the seats are close. Wherever you are, you can clearly hear coaches coaching.”

All training camp practices are free and open to the public. The Panthers will normally practice twice a day at 9:10 a.m. and 3:10 p.m. with each practice session lasting between 90 minutes and two hours. Practice times and locations are subject to change. To see the full schedule, go to www.TeamSpartanburgSC.org.

Throughout training camp, children will be able to once again enjoy the Panthers Experience, a series of interactive games where fans can test their skills. It will be open from 9-11 a.m. and from 3-5 p.m. every practice day through Aug. 18 with some exceptions. (Go to www.Panthers.com for a complete schedule.) Children ages 6-13 also will be able to register at most morning practices to be a Panthers Pal, who will have the opportunity to view the last part of practice from a special location and to meet players following practice. Register at the CVB tent outside the main gate.

Training camp typically is the best chance for fans to get autographs. Autograph seekers should bring a marker and an autographable item. Signing autographs is something special players do for their fans, but it is not required. Not every player will sign autographs every day. Though training camp is entertainment for the fans, it is hot and hard work for the players.

For information on training camp, go to www.TeamSpartanburgSC.org or call the Spartanburg Convention & Visitors Bureau at 594-5050 or 1-800-374-TEAM.