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Panthers getting 'Back to Football' at Wofford this summer


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Team returns for training camp July 29; parties, special events scheduled
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Carolina Panthers will be getting “Back to Football” at Wofford College for the 16th year of summer training camp, with the first practice scheduled for 9 a.m. on Thursday, July 29. Special promotions, including movie nights, T-shirt days and family fun days, will highlight camp, and the popular Panther Pals program for young fans will be expanded.

“Back to Football” is the NFL’s theme for this year’s season, and the Panthers and Wofford have embraced it for summer training.

A “Back to Football”-themed community party will be held from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 31, on the plaza at Gibbs Stadium, and will resume after the evening’s practice, which begins at 6:30 in the stadium. Festivities will include the popular local band Back 9, performances by the TopCats and Sir Purr, face painting, a Taste of Spartanburg food court, giveaways and more. Admission is free to the event, hosted by the Panthers, Wofford, the City of Spartanburg and Team Spartanburg Sports Council.

A Tailgate Party is scheduled for 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 14, also on the plaza of Gibbs Stadium before the evening practice. Fans will get the chance to have some of the best barbecue and ribs in the Upstate while listening to a music performance by local bluegrass band Bushy Valley Boys. Admission is free.

Monday Night at the Movies are scheduled following the 6:30 p.m. practices on Aug. 2 and 9. Fans are invited to stay on the hill after the evening practice concludes and watch a football-themed movie on the big screen under the stars. See “Radio” on Aug. 2 and “The Blind Side” on Aug. 9. Popcorn, candy and drinks will be available for purchase, but admission is free. “Radio” is based on the story of T.L. Hanna High School (Anderson, S.C.) football coach Harold Jones and James “Radio” Kennedy, who will be in attendance for a meet and greet prior to the showing of the movie. “The Blind Side” is about Baltimore Ravens tackle Michael Oher, who was a high school and college teammate of Panthers rookie defensive end Greg Hardy.

On T-Shirt Tuesdays – Aug. 10 and 17 following the 3 p.m. practices – Panthers players will toss T-shirts into the crowd along the autograph zone.

Family Fun Days will be held on Sunday, Aug. 1, and Sunday, Aug. 15, at the 3 p.m. practices. Fans can enjoy the Kids Combine, Military Experience and more activities for the whole family. The Kids Combine promotes the NFL’s Play 60 youth fitness initiative through a variety of interactive football drills. The South Carolina National Guard will help fans experience the military with hands-on displays.

The popular Panther Pals program, returning for its seventh year, will be expanded to nearly every day of practice this year. Panther Pals offers children between the ages of 6 and 13 an opportunity to watch part of practice from field level and then spend time with a player afterward. Kids can register to be a Panther Pal at the welcome tent located outside the entrance to the practice fields. Five names will be randomly chosen about 30 minutes before the end of practice. The children selected will receive a Panther Pal T-shirt and will be escorted to a special area to watch the conclusion of practice, then be matched with a player following practice. Registration begins approximately 30 minutes before the practice session begins. Children must be present when the names are called.

Panther Pals sessions are scheduled for:

• Thursday, July 29, 9 a.m.
• Friday, July 30, 3 p.m.
• Saturday, July 31, 9 a.m.
• Sunday, Aug. 1, 3 p.m.
• Monday, Aug. 2, 9 a.m.
• Tuesday, Aug. 3, 3 p.m.
• Wednesday, Aug. 4, 9 a.m.
• Thursday, Aug. 5, 3 p.m.
• Friday, Aug. 6, 9 a.m.
• Monday, Aug. 9, 9 a.m.
• Tuesday, Aug. 10, 3 p.m.
• Saturday, Aug. 14, 9 a.m.
• Sunday, Aug. 15, 3 p.m.
• Monday, Aug. 16, 9 a.m.
• Tuesday, Aug. 17, 3 p.m.

(Please note that all practices are subject to change of time and location without notice; changes in the practice schedule may cause the cancelation of Panther Pals without notice.)

For a full practice schedule and more information about Carolina Panthers training camp at Wofford College, please go to:

For information about the “Back to Football” party or Panther Pals, please contact Laura Corbin at Wofford College at or 597-4180.