How to Be A Browns Fan in CLE
Hello from Brownstown
By Kevin Carpenter
If there's one thing the Cleveland Browns are undefeated at, it's having the most passionate fans in the NFL. But, this isn't the kind of sports passion that turns on and off. It doesn't wane based on star players or Super Bowl rings.
It's the kind of passion that's passed down generation to generation. It's the unequivocal optimism eminating from every barstool and stadium seat on Sunday afternoon. It extends worldwide, as there are Browns Backers clubs in 14 countries - making it one of the largest organized fan clubs in all of professional sports.
And, listen, we know this kind of passion doesn't always make a whole lot of sense. But, this is Cleveland.
So come check out the madness surrounding Browns season right here in The Land. Here's how to do it like a Clevelander ...
Feel the Optimism
Okay, we're not talking the Super Bowl here, but the Browns should be decidedly better. The team made a flurry of trades and signings this offseason, capped off with the selection of Baker Mayfield with the #1 overall pick. Many experts tip them for major improvement in 2018.
Even better, this team is so likable. Viewers of HBO's "Hard Knocks" watched the players earn their stripes this summer and now feel a real connection with this group. From Jarvis Landry's inspirational speech about establishing a winning culture to a trip inside the mysterious QB RV, football fans nationwide have fallen in love with these Browns.
Rise & Shine in the Muni Lot
Start the party early each Sunday of a home game in the Muni Lot. Don't worry, you can't miss it. Just look for the brown and orange RVs, vans and -yes - even school buses. Grab a brat off the grill, play a little corn hole and talk some Browns football. Plus, it's only a five-minute walk to FirstEnergy Stadium.
Join the Dawg Pound
Image © Cody York
On game day, there's no better place to be than FirstEnergy Stadium on the shore of Lake Erie. With more than 73,000 screaming fans rooting on the home team, this place can really rock. Want to take it up a notch? Swing by the legendary Dawg Pound to rub elbows with the diehards. You might want to start practicing your barking now.
Hit a Watch Party
Didn't score tickets for the game? Not to worry. You won't have any trouble finding a bar or restaurant to catch the action. This is a football town, after all. Nary a bar in the entirety of Northeast Ohio will be without the Browns game on its TV during game day. But, if you're looking to build some special camaraderie with fans, consider heading Downtown to the Barley House in the Warehouse District. Or, try a few popular spots like The Clevelander, Panini's, the Winking Lizard and other bars lining Huron and Prospect avenues in the Gateway District.
Dress the Part
Whether you're heading to your first Browns game or just looking to turn heads with your team spirit, Cleveland's got you covered. Did you know we're the sports shirt capital of the world? Okay, we might have just made that up. BUT, a quick look through the newest designs from CLE Clothing Co., Fresh Brewed Tees, GV Art + Design and Emily Roggenburk Studios will make you a believer. Looking the part is actually pretty cool.
Where to Crash?
Just about all the hotels in Downtown Cleveland are within walking distance (or a short cab ride away) to FirstEnergy Stadium. But, those hotels within a half-mile distances of the stadium include:
- Aloft Cleveland Downtown
- Hilton Cleveland Downtown
- Drury Plaza Hotel Downtown Cleveland
- Cleveland Marriott Downtown at Key Tower
- Westin Cleveland Downtown