Bowl stadium

Packard

Senior Member
USA, English
Context:

I read a book recently (Back Story, by Robert Parker). In the book the detective (Spencer) gets in a shootout at a college stadium in Massachusetts (I forget which college).

The writer describes the stadium as a "bowl stadium" and goes on to describe a stadium that is open at one end, like the Harvard stadium shown below:



I had never heard of the distinction of a "bowl" stadium, and Google searches are so cluttered with "Rose Bowl", "Cotton Bowl", "Super Bowl", etc., that I could not find anything to document this.

Question:

Is this the name of an actual type of stadium?
 
  • pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    In my experience, a "bowl" is a stadium with seating all the way around, as opposed to having grandstands at the sides.

    I would say that your picture is of a "horseshoe" stadium. YMMV.
     

    heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I found this at wisegeek.com: Today, there are three basic stadium designs: oval, horseshoe and open. An oval stadium includes seating all the way around the field and, due to the length of the football field it surrounds, is oval in shape. A horseshoe stadium is open at one end, while an open stadium may be open at both ends.

    'Horseshoe' is a better description of the one in your picture, but it doesn't really answer your question. :(
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    The book says "Harvard Stadium was a bowl, open at the northerly end." I don't think he's defining the term "bowl stadium." He's saying the stadium was like a bowl but open on one end.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    I found this at wisegeek.com: Today, there are three basic stadium designs: oval, horseshoe and open. An oval stadium includes seating all the way around the field and, due to the length of the football field it surrounds, is oval in shape. A horseshoe stadium is open at one end, while an open stadium may be open at both ends.

    'Horseshoe' is a better description of the one in your picture, but it doesn't really answer your question. :(
    The shape of the stadium was perfectly clear in the book. It looked like the image I provided. But he was clearly referring to that shape as a "bowl" and I had never heard of that distinction.

    The book was written in 2003 so not that old (his first Spencer novel was in 1973).
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    The book says "Harvard Stadium was a bowl, open at the northerly end." I don't think he's defining the term "bowl stadium." He's saying the stadium was like a bowl but open on one end.
    You maybe right. I will have to go back and look. Thanks.
     
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