Hate it or love it the “wave” is one of those things that the crowd does at nearly every sporting event. However, this new version of the “wave” at the University of Iowa’s football season opener was something we’ve never seen before.
At the end of the first quarter, the entire crowd stood up, turned around, and waved towards a new building next to the stadium.
The Iowa Hawkeyes hope to start a new game day tradition.
They were waving to children and their parents watching the game from high above the stadium—at the new University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital, directly next to the football stadium.
The top floor of the children’s hospital features a cafe with floor-to-ceiling windows that provide the perfect view of the football field down below. The cafe is appropriately named Press Box Cafe.
After the first quarter, the crowd was asked to wave to the patients and their families watching the game.
SBNation discovered that the idea was originally proposed in the beginning of June on an Iowa Hawkeyes Facebook page. It was no doubt that the idea would be put into action, considering the Hawkeyes’ head coach Kirk Ferentz’s connection with the hospital—he recently donated one million dollars to help with research for premature babies.
Ferentz and his wife donated the money after one of their grandchildren, who was born premature at 21 weeks, passed away.
It was a special moment that everyone hopes will continue.
Following the game, photos and videos of the special moments started popping up on social media.
It was an extremely heartwarming moment for both the football fans in the stands and the families at the children’s hospital.
The new tradition, which began on Saturday, is just another way the University of Iowa supports the neighboring hospital.
The university encourages football fans to donate $1 per touchdown scored during the regular season to the children’s hospital. Since 2010, football fans have donated over $400,000. And with Iowa’s 24-3 win this past weekend, they’re already off to another great year of giving.