DENVER — The horse that has stood watch over the Denver Broncos' stadium since 1975 is on the move once again.
Bucky the Bronco was lifted by crane Saturday morning from atop the South Stands scoreboard at Empower Field at Mile High.
The 27-foot-tall fiberglass horse is being moved temporarily as part of $100 million in upgrades to the Broncos' stadium this offseason.
The horse will be added back to the scoreboard once the video screen is nearly doubled in height.
When complete by the start of the NFL season in August, the Broncos' main videoboard will rank as the fourth-largest single scoreboard in an NFL stadium at 72-feet high and 225-feet wide.
Bucky originally stood on the South Stands' scoreboard at Mile High Stadium before being removed in 2001 and moved to then-Invesco Field at Mile High with a fresh coat of paint.
Bucky the Bronco was modeled after Trigger, the famous horse in Roy Rogers' Western films.
The project is the single-largest capital improvement in Empower Field's 22-year history with improvements to the suites, technology, concessions, the Broncos Team Store and elevators.
The south scoreboard, as well as the two other in-bowl videoboards and ribbon boards, will upgrade to HDR (High Dynamic Range)-quality displays.
The Broncos said more screen surface area will allow for "real-time statistics, hi-definition replays and enhanced in-game entertainment."
The scoreboard's video control room will be rebuilt with new technology and a conversion to HDR, while tunnel boards will also undergo significant enhancements.
The Broncos said that the stadium's WiFi will be enhanced in 2024.
Broncos team store
The Broncos' team store at Empower Field at Mile High has closed as part of the renovations and is scheduled to reopen in late summer.
The store will expand 25 percent (3,000 square feet) with more point-of-sale systems and expanded checkout areas.
For the first time ever, customer restrooms will be installed in the store
The south deck of Empower Field at Mile High is getting permanent concessions for the first time ever.
Additional concession enhancements also will be made to Levels 1, 2, 3 and 5.
The Broncos said the stadium will see expanded concession technology with the "largest deployment of autonomous markets of any sports venue."
Two new elevators will be installed on both the east and west sides of the stadium.
"Premium guests" will enjoy renovated corridors and suites. A new hospitality space for fans will be built on Level 0 while the United Club will get new A/V technology and larger HD video displays.
"This significant investment in Empower Field at Mile High—the largest in the stadium’s history—demonstrates the deep commitment by the Walton-Penner Family Ownership Group to immediately and continually provide the best possible experience for our fans," Broncos' President Damani Leech said. "As we look toward the future with the long-term plans for our stadium, we are equally focused on the present to ensure Empower Field at Mile High remains a premier sports and entertainment venue.
"We are excited to announce these upgrades to Empower Field at Mile High and are grateful for the support of our ownership group, the Metropolitan Football Stadium District and the National Football League."
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