On Friday, May 12 when the Houston Dynamo host Vancouver Whitecaps FC at 8 p.m., a special milestone will take place: BBVA Compass Stadium will celebrate its five-year anniversary. The stadium officially opened its doors on May 12, 2012 for a Dynamo home game against D.C. United.
Over the last five years, BBVA Compass Stadium has played host to more than 225 ticketed events including Houston Dynamo and Houston Dash homes games, Texas Southern University home football games, international soccer and rugby matches and concerts. The stadium has hosted 16 different international soccer clubs, 27 men’s and women’s national soccer teams and 17 men’s and women’s national rugby teams.
“We are all very proud of BBVA Compass Stadium and the impact it has made over the last five years. It has become one of the premier soccer venues in North America and a great home for the Dynamo, Dash and international competition. It has also proven to be a versatile facility for non-soccer events, such as TSU football, concerts, rugby and more,” said Dynamo and Dash President Chris Canetti. “The stadium has been the catalyst for development in our neighborhood, leading to a positive and on-going transformation of EaDo. More than anything, it has become a great asset to our community bringing in more than three million visitors to experience and share lifelong memories.”
Before kickoff on Friday night, Dynamo legend Brad Davis, who scored the first goal in stadium history, will perform a ceremonial “First Kick;” and BBVA Compass Houston CEO Mark Montgomery will fire ‘El Capitán,’ the Texas Revolutionary War-era cannon that belongs to the winner of the annual Texas Derby series between the Dynamo and FC Dallas. At halftime, the Dynamo will make a special presentation to BBVA Compass in honor of the first five years of the stadium. Following the game, BBVA Compass will distribute 3,000 commemorative cinch bags to fans as they exit the stadium.
“Putting our name on the stadium was just the beginning of our commitment to create opportunities for a bright future for east of downtown,” said BBVA Compass Houston CEO Mark Montgomery. “Investing further into the bright future of this community, with renovated homes and educational youth programs that place an emphasis on financial literacy, created opportunities for all that inhabit the East End. As a national leader in small business lending, we are proud of the work we have done to cultivate and create opportunities for entrepreneurship and innovation in this historic neighborhood. BBVA Compass is dedicated to all of its communities, and the transformation of EaDo has been remarkable during the past five years.”
Since the stadium opened, BBVA Compass and the Houston Dynamo have worked together to promote the growth and beautification of Houston’s EaDo neighborhood by hosting events such as Building a Better Houston, the House that Ching built and other supportive community events. As a result, the bank has poured in almost 1,000 total hours of employee volunteer work and more than $250,000 in grants for the Building a Better Houston initiative, $11 million in community development investments for 175 affordable housing units in the neighborhood, and has impacted over 800 elementary and high-school students in the area with more than 890 hours in financial education from over 137 bank volunteers. Courses have been taught in various neighborhood locations, including at nearby Rusk Elementary and the stadium itself. The bank has also provided $10,000 in scholarships to 10 local students as part of the Business of Sports program, in partnership with the Dynamo, Dynamo Charities and Junior Achievement.
EaDo has also seen the addition of local businesses such as King’s Court, Pappa Charlies BBQ, Ahh! Coffee and more, as well as the growth of pre-existing businesses such as Lucky’s Pub and Little Woodrow’s.
“The past five years have seem to have come and gone in a flash since the opening BBVA Compass Stadium. It is not only amazing to be a part of the growth of soccer in this country but the growth of the city of Houston as well” said Houston Dynamo legend Brian Ching. “The stadium has breathed life into Eado and helped begin the transformation of the area into one of the most happening parts of the city. Initiatives and partnerships like Build a Better Houston and Big Brothers Big Sisters Mentorship at Rusk Elementary continue help lead the improvement of the area and residents through our many community initiatives over the years.”
The stadium has breathed life into Eado and helped begin the transformation of the area
Last Saturday, May 6, the stadium welcomed its three millionth guest prior to kickoff of the Dynamo home game against Orlando City SC. Dynamo Season Ticket Member Mike Duncan was greeted with a confetti shower, music and gifts from Dynamo mascot Dynamo Diesel after his ticket was scanned. He, his wife Angie and young son Connor received a customized No. 3 Dynamo home jersey with “MILLION” on the nameplate, a certificate officially recognizing them as the three millionth fan in stadium history, and a VIP seat upgrade for the game.
For more information about the fifth anniversary, visit BBVACompassStadium.com or HoustonDynamo.com/BBVACompassFiveYears. The page includes first-person blog posts from Ching, Dynamo fans and others recalling Opening Day in 2012, videos showcasing the impact of the stadium on the businesses and community around it, and memorable moments in the stadium’s history.