The Fresno State football team’s home opener Saturday against Sacramento State will feature a joint band performance, a pregame flyover and a ceremony to retire the jersey of former quarterback David Carr.

Because of expected hot weather, Fresno State officials are implementing plans to combat the heat at Bulldog Stadium.

The Ricchiuti Strength and Conditioning Center at the south end of the stadium will be open as a cooling area for fan comfort. Also, Lanotte Refrigeration is providing water-misting fans in the northwest and northeast corners of the stadium concourse. Patrons will be able to get water at several concession locations in the stadium.

The Bulldog Marching Band of Fresno State will kick off its 80th season by making it a family affair: a CSU family that is, by inviting its sister California State University campus’ marching band to participate in halftime and post-game performances.

Watching the Sacramento State band in Bulldog Stadium will be a homecoming of sorts for that university’s president, Alex Gonzalez. He spent 18 years at Fresno State as a faculty member and later as provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.

The Hornets’ and Bulldogs’ bands will come together for a joint half-time show, “showcasing the wonderful experiences available to students in the California State University system,” said Timothy Todd Anderson, director of Athletic Bands in the Fresno State Music Department. The bands also will perform together on the field after the game.

The Bulldog Marching Band will join President John D. Welty in the salute to former Bulldog quarterback David Carr, who returns to his alma mater for a retirement ceremony of his No. 8 Bulldog jersey.

Before the game, the band meets at the music building and will march across campus to the stadium. The band will stop at Bulldog Boulevard at 5:30 for a pep rally and serenade tailgaters outside the stadium before the game. During the third quarter, some band members will play music in the stands.

The California Air National Guard 144th Fighter Wing will perform a flyover at about 6:54 p.m., after the Bulldog Marching Band performs the National Anthem.

At more than 280 members, this year’s band is the largest in Fresno State history, and is the driving force behind the Bulldog Red Wave at home football games, Anderson said.

This year’s student drum majors are Phil Johnson, lead, of San Diego, and Omar Niazi of Hesperia and Mary Pagedarm of San Jose.

The band will travel to Reno the weekend of Oct. 5 to support the Bulldog football team in its game at the University of Nevada, but must raise funds to make the trip.

“We invite community members to help us bring Bulldog Stadium over the Sierras by contacting the band office to find out how you can support our students’ efforts,” Anderson said.

For more information about the band or to contribute to its Reno fundraiser, contact the Band Office at 559.278.5086.

For more information contained in this release, please go to the following Web site(s):

Bulldog Football

Bulldog Marching Band