UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- One of the highlights of the Penn State sports calendar, Blue-White Weekend presented by AAA, gets under way Friday, April 19 with the Blue-White football game as the centerpiece for numerous activities throughout the weekend in and around Beaver Stadium.
Kickoff is set for noon on Saturday, April 20 in Beaver Stadium. The game will air on the Penn State Sports Network. As in previous years, there will be no admission or parking fee for the Blue-White Game. Stadium parking lots will open at 8:00 a.m. and stadium Gates A, B, C and E will open for fans at 10:30 a.m.
A separate autograph session with football student-athletes is in the planning for this summer, perhaps in conjunction with training camp in August, rather than the day of the Blue-White Game.
Numerous events will be held during Blue-White Weekend to celebrate Penn State Football, including the 2013 NCAA Men's Gymnastics Championships in Rec Hall, held April 19-21. In addition to the men's gymnastics team, the Penn State baseball, field hockey, men's golf, softball, men's tennis, women's tennis and men's volleyball teams will be competing at home during Blue-White Weekend.
Many fan favorites will return for Blue-White Weekend presented by AAA, including Friday's Wingfest and fireworks, the Nittany Lion Club's Blue-White Event on Saturday and Sunday's Beaver Stadium 5K Run/Family Fun Walk to benefit Special Olympics Pennsylvania.
A carnival, food vendors and several bands and student performers also will return throughout the weekend.
The Nittany Lion Club's Blue-White breakfast event on April 20 will feature Coach Bill O'Brien and the Nittany Lion seniors. The Blue-White Event will be held in the Bryce Jordan Center and is open to the public. The event schedule and ticket information will be announced by early March.
Blue-White Weekend is the university's unofficial annual spring reunion. The 2012 scrimmage drew an estimated 60,000 fans, the nation's third-highest spring football game attendance. The Blue-White Game attracted record-breaking crowds in excess of 70,000 from 2007-09, topped by 76,500 at the 2009 contest.
In his first season as the Nittany Lions' head coach, O'Brien was selected the 2012 Bear Bryant, Maxwell Football Club and ESPN Coach of the Year and the Big Ten-Dave McClain Coach of the Year. The Nittany Lions won eight of their final 10 games, beating eventual Big Ten champion Wisconsin, 24-21, in overtime, on Senior Day to finish 8-4 overall and 6-2 in the Big Ten. O'Brien's eight wins were the most by a first-year Penn State coach in the 126 years of the program.
Penn State returns 16 starters and 38 letterwinners for the upcoming season. The Nittany Lions will begin spring drills March 18, with the 15 practices culminating in the Blue-White Game presented by AAA on April 20.
Season tickets are available for the 2013 campaign. The Nittany Lions will host three teams that finished in the 2012 BCS Top 25: Michigan (Oct. 12-Homecoming), Nebraska (Nov. 23) and Kent State (Sept. 21). Purdue, Illinois, UCF and Eastern Michigan also will visit Beaver Stadium this fall. Penn State opens the season Aug. 31 vs. Syracuse at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
For information on joining the Nittany Lion Club and purchasing season tickets, as well as club seating in Beaver Stadium, fans can visit www.GoPSUsports.com or call 1-800-NITTANY weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.