The new home of the San Francisco 49ers, Levi’s Stadium, which will host its first football game this Sunday, holds several connections to Turlock and the Central Valley.
Levi’s Stadium, where 49ers’ quarterback and Turlock native Colin Kaepernick will take the field, features several things belonging to the star player.
Everyone has heard about the letter that Kap wrote to himself when he was in the fourth-grade, and that letter is one of the many pieces displayed in the 49ers Museum at Levi’s Stadium. Other Kaepernick pieces in the 49ers Museum include a replica of the locker he has in the new stadium outfitted with gear that fans attending the museum can try on.
However, Turlock’s favorite isn’t the only 49er honored in the museum. The 20,000 square-foot museum features 11 unique galleries and exhibits for fans to check out.
With the rich tradition of the 49ers, the museum is plumb full of history. Some of the museum’s highlights include: 208 footballs hanging from the ceiling, representing the 208 all-purpose touchdowns scored by hall of fame receiver Jerry Rice; a re-creation of the late-head coach Bill Walsh’s office, which features all original items from his office — with a few modern touches; and statues of 25 49er greats from Hall of Famers Joe Montana, Ronnie Lott, and Joe Perry to famous owner Eddie Debartolo, Jr.
Turlock photographer Brad Treadwell, of Treadwell Photography, was there to capture some of the museum’s grandeur during a media tour before the museum opened to the public.
“A must see for any football fan not just the 49er faithful,” said Treadwell about the museum and his experience on the tour.
Although the museum is a tribute to the team’s history, it’s not lacking in modernity. The 90-seat Morabito Theater tells the story of the 49ers through film, while fans can get “In The Game” with interactive challenges and exhibits, including a passing and kicking simulator.
Of course, the 49ers Museum would not be complete without the five Lombardi trophies, and rings for each championship, on display.
Along with the museum, there’s a little more local flare featured in the $1.2 billion home of the 49ers.
Local artist and Hughson native Nick Brown is one of the artists whose art is featured throughout the stadium. Brown, who grew up a huge 49ers fan, was utterly shocked when he received the call that his art would be featured in Levi’s Stadium.
“When this came with the niner thing, it was totally surreal,” Brown said in a video on LevisStadium.com. “I never could have imagined that my inlet to getting close to the niners would be my painting of all things.”
Brown’s work will be on display when Levi’s Stadium opens this Sunday as the 49ers host the Denver Broncos in the preseason home opener.
The 49ers Museum is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week, except during game days when the museum will open the same time gates open to the public and close 30 minutes prior to the beginning of the game. Tickets to the museum are $15 for adults and $10 for children (ages 5 to 12), seniors, military, and Santa Clara residents. Public-guided tours of the stadium are also available and cost $35 for adults and $30 for children, seniors, military and Santa Clara residents; the price of the tour includes admission to the museum.