The Palestra Seating Plan
Events at The Palestra
Details of The Palestra and the Ticket Luck value
A historic and one the most storied sporting venues in the country, known as Palestra, is located at the University of Pennsylvania, just five minutes from Center City Philadelphia.
Other than being the historic home of the University of Pennsylvania Quakers Basketball, Volleyball, and Wrestling teams the facility also serves as the main arena for most of the Philadelphia Big 5 men's basketball college matches.
Palestra opened on January 1st, 1927, when it had the capacity to seat 10,000 people approximately. Whereas, now the arena"s seating has been reduced to 8,722 seats for basketball. It broke ground in 1926, and the construction of the building completed in 1927.
A Greek professor, Dr. William N. Bates, named the building after the ancient Greek term pal?stra, Palestra, meaning a rectangular enclosure attached to a gymnasium where athletes would compete in various sports in front of an audience.
Dr. Bates fittingly drew his inspiration from ancient Greece - the young men would train their skills in their gymnasia then compete to demonstrate their skills and prove their abilities in front of the public in an attached enclosure called a Palestra. Being built beside the Hutchinson Gymnasium, thus it is still connected to it.
The Palestra is renowned for its close-to-the-court seating with the bleachers ending at the floor with no barrier to separate the fans from the game. It was one of the first modern steel-and-concrete arenas in the United States and also one of the first to be constructed without interior pillars blocking the view. The Palestra was one of the largest arenas in the world at the time of its construction.
The first basketball game played at the Palestra was on January 1st, 1927, when Pennsylvania defeated Yale with a score of 26-15. A crowd of 10,000 fans had gathered at the arena for its debut game, which was the largest crowd to ever attend a basketball game on the East Coast at that time.
The building shared the same management as Madison Square Garden in New York City for many years. Palestra hosted several very high-level sporting events, mainly due to one reason, which was, the teams that wished to play at the Manhattan venue were often required also to schedule a game at the Palestra.
A lot of other professional games were played at the Palestra before the completion of the Spectrum in 1967. Palestra is one arena in the U.S. that has hosted more regular season or post-season NCAA men's basketball games, more visiting teams, and more NCAA tournaments than any other.
It has also hosted the East regionals six times, the sub-regionals ten times, and is often known as the birthplace of college basketball. Saint Joseph's home games are being played at the Palestra for 2008-09 basketball season, as there is construction in progress in their home arena.
The gym has also served as the site of many Philadelphia and PIAA championship games.
Come, and experience the energetic and exuberant crowd at any of Palestra"s matches, especially when it is home to one of the greatest rivalries in college sports, the Big 5.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q:Do you know the events happening at Palestra this weekend ?
A:Check our Palestra venue page for the details.