Surrounded by medieval buildings in the heart of the Basque capital, the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague FanZone once again served as the meeting point for basketball lovers at the Final Four. The colorful atmosphere created by fans dressed in colors of their favorite Final Four teams as well as a large number of locals sporting Baskonia gear set the tone for a fun-filled experience for everyone who visited.
The 2019 FanZone was set up at three central squares in Vitoria-Gasteiz – Plaza España (Plaza Nueva), Plaza de la Virgen Blanca and Plaza de los Fueros – and attracted big crowds from the moment it opened its doors on Friday morning until closing on Sunday night. Even heavy rains at times could not dampen the FanZone experience. Over the three days it was open, some 220,000 people visited the FanZone, which is almost as many people as live in the city! Saturday was the busiest day with an estimated 100,000 men, women and children of all ages packing the three squares to check out all the fun FanZone had to offer.
And there was plenty to offer. From the FanZone's official tip-off on Friday morning, fans formed long lines at more than a dozen areas, courts and pavilions sponsored by Euroleague Basketball partners Turkish Airlines, 7DAYS, adidas, Bwin, Eneos, Endesa, AXA, Oscar Mayer, Volvo and StubHub. Visitors were able to take turns posing for photos with the EuroLeague trophy, showcase their basketball skills – from shooting to dunking and dribbling – and play contests to win souvenirs.
The FanZone was also the place to find basketball legends of the past and current EuroLeague stars dropping in to interact, take photos with and sign autographs for their faithful supporters. Fans en mase moved from one area to the next, along with the players who did not shy away from competing against one another or testing their own skills while trying to beat the previous top scores in some of the contests.
Like every year, a major part of the FanZone experience was the chance to play basketball. The most competitive of them all were the adidas 3X3 Tournament and the five-on-five games of the EuroLeague Academy basketball tournament, a 16-team competition at the Main Court where more than 200 players aged 12 and under took part. In the end, the Toki Eder 2 team took the trophy.
None of the fun would have been the same without the entertainment provided by live DJs and EFES Euroleague Dancers, who created a constant beat and helped the FanZone move in a rhythm. At the heart of Vitoria-Gasteiz, some basketball fans created memories that they will forever cherish, making the 2019 FanZone another raging success.