06/06/2007 12:06 PM
For many, a Saturday evening watching football at the Spokane Arena is a night of guaranteed entertainment for the whole family. But for Spokane native John Taylor, the Shock’s first season ticket holder and charter member of the Shockwave Booster club, it’s something more.
For Taylor it is not the last-second wins, nor is it the pre-game fireworks that make the games unique; it’s their ability to bring together members of the community who would not know each other otherwise.
Recently, Taylor traveled to Boise to watch the Shock take on the Burn. Due to the recent rise in gas prices, Taylor recruited two other fans through the message boards on the Shock’s website to carpool with him in order to split the cost of the trip. Though they barely knew each other prior to making the trip, the three formed an immediate bond during the seven-hour car ride.
“That’s what the Shock does; it makes friends come together,” Taylor said.
The announcement that Spokane would become the newest member of the af2 was an unforgettable moment for many in the Spokane community, especially Taylor. As soon as he heard from team owner Brady Nelson that the city would be home to an arena football team, Taylor bought personalized “Go Shock” license plates.
“My wife wouldn’t let me paint the suburban blue and orange,” Taylor said about his aptly-named “Shockwagon.” So, Taylor did the next best thing and added the team’s logo blanketing his rear window.
This passion quickly spread throughout the community, fueled by the team’s several last-second wins and eventual af2 championship. The total attendance from last season reached 99,937.
The passion has carried over to this season. The Shock continues to lead the af2 in game attendance, drawing in an average of over 10,000 fans to a consistently sold-out arena. Fans dressed in orange and blue from head to toe are arriving by the thousands to the games. They are ordering the Shock burger at Max at the Mirabeau or at Zips Drive-In and are playing trivia with the team on Thursday evenings at Heroes and Legends. Fans, like Taylor, are even spending their days off from work traveling long hours to support the Shock on road games.
These legions of fans have joined Taylor each and every game day. Whether they show support for their team by painting their faces orange and blue or by ordering Shock burgers, all Shock fans share one thing in common—an undying love for the Shock brand of football.