The Thunder Hits Oklahoma City Wednesday

OKLAHOMA CITY, Monday, Oct. 27, 2008 – The NBA arrives in Oklahoma City in full force this week as the Thunder tips off its first season in the Ford Center on Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 7 p.m. against the Milwaukee Bucks. A full-blown, pregame block party transforming Reno Avenue into Thunder Alley will precede the historic debut. Fans attending the game will hear from NBA Commissioner David Stern and receive free commemorative T-shirts.

A very limited number of tickets remain on sale for Opening Night at About 200 tickets will be held and put on sale at the Ford Center box office on game day. Details on those tickets will be released on Tuesday.

Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett will present an official proclamation to the Oklahoma City Council on Tuesday declaring Wednesday a “Day of Thunder” in the City.

“It will be a day and night that all of Oklahoma can be proud of by celebrating our first major league sports team,” Thunder spokesman Dan Mahoney said. “We encourage Thunder fans to come early and enjoy the festivities. It will definitely be a night to remember with exciting NBA entertainment, including some extra surprises.”

Thunder Alley events begin at 2 p.m. Entertainment includes live music, BMX bike stunt shows, interactive games, food and an autograph session with the Thunder Girls. Reno Avenue, in front of the Ford Center, will be closed between Robinson and E.K. Gaylord.

The celebration continues inside the arena with a free T-shirt for everyone in attendance that will turn the Ford Center into a sea of Thunder blue. Fans will also receive a free GameNight program. A limited edition 2008 Thunder inaugural commemorative team magazine will also be available for purchase. Fans will see the Thunder on their new basketball floor for the first time, which will be unveiled amongst a spectacular display of lights, music and other special effects.

Oklahoma City native and Universal Republic Records artist Graham Colton will perform Wednesday’s National Anthem. It will also mark the debut of the Thunder's dance team - the Thunder Girls - and the Thunder dunk and drum teams. Other Opening Night activities on the concourse include face painting, sign-making stations, magicians and balloon artists, along with live music.

Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. Fans are encouraged to arrive early, join the festivities in Thunder Alley and visit the newly opened ThunderShop in the arena to purchase Thunder apparel and merchandise. Fans in Bricktown at 6 p.m. can walk to the arena with members of the dance team and Thunder representatives. The Bricktown Thunder Walk will begin at the canal on Mickey Mantle Dr. and walk to Thunder Alley at the Ford Center.

The Thunder’s home opener can be seen in HD live on Thunder TV/KSBI-TV (52) in Oklahoma City. It will also be carried on the Thunder Radio Network statewide, led by Oklahoma City flagship stations WWLS (640AM and 98.1 FM), the Sports Animal. For more information on Opening Night visit