The Atlanta Hawks Begin Season-Long 50th Anniversary Celebration Featuring Golden-Themed Games Presented By Budweiser and 50 Acts of Service To Impact 50,000 Lives

The Hawks’ First Ever Commemorative Court, 1968-Inspired Throwback Uniforms, Top Players Chosen by Fans, and a Look Back at Historic Milestones Round Out Tributes to the Hawks’ First Five Decades in Atlanta
Atlanta Hawks

ATLANTA -- On October 16, 1968, the Atlanta Hawks played their first game in the city of Atlanta at Alexander Memorial Coliseum versus the Cincinnati Royals. A half century later the team begins its next 50 years in the city with a special season-long celebration highlighted by  golden-themed games,a high-impact, multi-tiered community program and interactive fan activations including a virtual timeline and fan voting on the Hawks All-Time Team. During the year, the Hawks franchise will complete 50 acts of service throughout the greater Atlanta region as a nod to the anniversary.  Budweiser has partnered with the team to present several signature moments, including two 50th Anniversary game nights,  a new content series highlighting 50 historic Hawks moments, fan voting to select the top Hawks of all time, and a digital heritage hall. 

To commemorate 50 years in Atlanta, the Hawks have pledged to complete 50 acts of service designed to impact 50,000 lives, while integrating current Hawks players, alumni and staff.  Those touchpoints started with the team’s participation in the annual Atlanta Pride Parade on Oct. 14. Other major initiatives planned for the 2018-19 season include public court renovations, community conversations, employee community service projects, basketball camps and clinics as well as basketball equipment donations to area non-profits. The organization has also identified 50 individuals and organizations who have epitomized being True To Atlanta during the Hawks’ tenure in the city. Those selected will be recognized at home games throughout the season.

“It is so important that we honor our 50-year anniversary in a bold way that highlights our franchise history and our city’s heroes, but also creates opportunities for future generations of Atlantans through hands-on community service,” said Nzinga Shaw, SVP, Community and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for the Hawks and State Farm Arena. “Giving back will be at the core of all we do.”

In August at the Hawks Preview Event, Hawks CEO Steve Koonin unveiled the team’s first-ever secondary court, a 50th Anniversary black and gold floor that will be used at select home games. Two of those court appearances will take place during the team’s Celebrating 50 Years games presented by Budweiser with the first scheduled on Nov. 9 versus the Detroit Pistons. Also making its debut on that night will be the new Nike City Edition Collection uniform. The uniquely-designed uniforms pay homage to the fans with its custom style tailored to represent the city. Fans will also receive a free, co-branded rally towel that evening. 

When the floor makes its re-appearance at the Jan. 15 contest against the Oklahoma City Thunder, it will be accompanied by a 50th commemorative coin give away and the team’s Hardwood Classic uniforms in the powder blue and red color scheme from their inaugural year in Atlanta. The full schedule of games where the 50th Anniversary court will be used includes:

  • 11/9    vs. Detroit Pistons – Celebrating 50 Years Game
  • 11/19  vs. Los Angeles Clippers
  • 12/8    vs. Denver Nuggets
  • 1/15    vs. Oklahoma City Thunder – Throwback Game
  • 1/21    vs. Orlando Magic
  • 2/7      vs. Toronto Raptors
  • 2/22    vs. Detroit Pistons
  • 2/23    vs. Phoenix Suns
  • 3/23    vs. Philadelphia 76ers
  • 4/10    vs. Indiana Pacers

“The Hawks have created lifelong memories for so many fans over the past 50 years with unforgettable moments and a number of great coaches, players and personalities who have called Atlanta home. As a native Atlantan, this is truly a special anniversary,” said Koonin. “We are excited to pay homage to what has been an extraordinary journey for five decades, as we prepare to launch the next generation of Hawks basketball.”

Iconic beer brand Budweiser will also present several opportunities to look back at some of the great milestones in the team’s past with the 50 Moments in Hawks History content series, as well as the Hawks Heritage Hall and Fan 5 Voting. Vignettes recounting the memorable coaches, players, supporters, personnel and games of the franchise will debut throughout the season on the team’s social channels and in-arena.  Fans can take a walk through the team’s past with the Hawks Heritage Hall, a digital timeline that begins with the announcement of the team’s move from St. Louis to Atlanta in the Spring of 1968. The debate on the greatest Hawks of all time will end when fans vote through Dec. 9 to see who makes the top 5 at www.hawks.com/fanfive. The results will be unveiled at the Jan. 15 50th Throwback Game.

“We are excited to celebrate the 50th anniversary season with Atlanta Hawks fans,” said Joao Chueiri, Vice President of Consumer Connections at Anheuser-Busch. “Budweiser has created a variety of experiences with the Hawks that will celebrate the franchise’s rich history and bring fans closer to the game.”

Special retail offerings are also planned during the season. Along with the Hardwood Classic jerseys, collectors can also plan to get limited edition items including the Hawks’ commemorative gold coin, 50th Anniversary logo hat and Phenom Gallery serigraphs.  Just 300 of the signed, screen-printed artwork, designed by the artist Stolitron, will be available exclusively in the Hawks Shop in State Farm Arena.

To get tickets for the Hawks’ upcoming 2018 -19 season including the home opener on Oct. 24 in the all-new State Farm Arena featuring performances by Future and Zac Brown Band, go to Hawks.com