June 7, 2009

Dallas Cowboys open new stadium

More than 60,000 Texas football and country music fans have inaugurated the new $1.1 billion Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, team officials say.

A concert by country music star George Strait Saturday was the first event for the retractable roof stadium, which will become the NFL team's new home in the upcoming season, replacing Texas Stadium in nearby Irving, the Fort Worth (Texas) Star-Telegram reported.

Fans gawked at the expansive facility's giant video boards while Cowboys owner Jerry Jones signed autographs from his owners box on the 50-yard line, accompanied by former Cowboys coach Jimmy Johnson and U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, the newspaper said.

The stadium's roof was opened before the concert, giving fans an opportunity to see the massive structure in action.

It's a culmination of a lot of hard work, Jerry Jones Jr., the Cowboys owner's son, told reporters. Our biggest challenge for this project was to meet our fans' expectations. Walking around, I see a lot of smiles.

Arlington Mayor Robert Cluck told the Star-Telegram the stadium will be a wonder of the world.