Commissioner Roger Goodell, the Hunt family and the Chiefs organization officially dedicated the Founder’s Plaza at the New Arrowhead on Friday. Providing the entrance to the north side of the stadium, the open-air plaza shows Hunt’s legacy as a founding father of American sports and welcomes fans to the New Arrowhead.
A heroic-sized statue of Hunt created by noted sculptor Bruce Wolfe was unveiled by members of the Hunt family, including Norma, Clark, Lamar, Jr., Sharron and Daniel, who all worked intimately with Wolfe to help render likeness of the late Chiefs patriarch. The base of the statue celebrates Hunt’s legacy as a fan, a visionary, an innovator and as a humble leader.
The sculpture of Hunt is among Wolfe’s litany of many prestigious works that also includes statues of former Prime Minister of Great Britain Margaret Thatcher, as well as former Secretary of State George Shultz.
The plaza features many other unique and notable design elements. Eight fountains represent the league’s original franchises with the Eastern Division teams on the east side of the plaza and the Western Division teams on the west side. Decorative blocks on the rims of the fountains denote the dates that each franchise was officially ushered into the AFL.
At the center of the plaza is a large AFL logo laid in a field of light and dark granite pavers. The logo features the initials “LH,” in Hunt’s honor, and is similar in design to the patch on the Chiefs uniform that serves as a tribute to Hunt.
The plaza’s football shape reflects the Vince Lombardi Trophy honoring Hunt’s tremendous influence on the Super Bowl. Hunt named the game, recommended that the NFL enumerate each game with the now-iconic Roman numerals and asked Commissioner Pete Rozelle to name the championship trophy after Vince Lombardi.
The plaza also includes a three-dimensional diagram of Head Coach Hank Stram’s famous “65 Toss Power Trap” from the Chiefs 23-7 victory over the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV, dubbed by Hunt as “the signature play in Chiefs history.”
Bronze plaques located throughout the plaza highlight Hunt’s innovations in professional football, soccer, tennis and business. These plaques are surrounded by more than five thousand customized bricks with messages from Chiefs fans.