It’s the only place I’ve seen where you can use the restroom and watch the final thirty seconds of a football game.

Talk about every sports fans dream.

The chain of ESPN Zone restaurants will close on Tuesday afternoon. To some of you, this means very little. To me, it’s a big deal.

I was there on opening day at ESPN Zone in 1998 with my brother. Waiting for hours in line, we were lucky enough to hit the screening room (that’s the big room with all of the TV’s) for the start of the World Cup final. The loudest chant I’ve ever heard in my life originated in the bar area and echoed its way through the massive arena.

It was a really, really cool experience.

About five years ago I took my baby sister there to watch a baseball game. It was one of her first real “grown up” trips around town. I’ll always remember how much fun she took in on the horse racing game (which, truth be told, remains my favorite activity at the Zone). It’s one of the rare family moments that everyone treasures.

Last year I actually stayed at the Zone past closing time for their Couch Potato contest. In this once-in-a-lifetime event, I stayed up for 33 consecutive hours. Meeting a very interesting cast of characters, I will always remember that time with a smile especially when I watch college football on New Year’s Day.

There are other sports bars in town that serve the same purpose. Charge nine bucks for a cheeseburger, make sure a number of HDTV’s are available to view and host a number of cool events.

This was my place. I think I’ll miss the chocolate chip ice cream sundae the most.


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