DENVER – Cruel summer heat set in on the throngs of Taylor Swift fans who had flocked to the artist’s official merchandise truck Thursday morning outside Empower Field at Mile High, and several weren’t ready for it.
The Denver Fire Department told Denver7 it had responded to several heat-related calls at the stadium. Stadium Medical, which had paramedics on-site, said they had treated at least eight fans for heat-related illness by 1:30 p.m.
At least one fan was taken to a hospital.
Temperatures in Denver climbed to 90 degrees by early Thursday afternoon, and the shade that had been cast over the merch truck through the morning hours disappeared as the sun rose over the east side of the stadium.
The dehydrated among the crowds had to pay a pretty penny for water, too. Denver7 crews outside the stadium saw bottles being sold for as much as $8.
For some, an hours-long wait and passed-out fans may beg the question: Is it worth it?
That answer, for many of the devoted fans spending their Thursday in a T-shirt line, is yes.
Maddie Francis told Denver7 that months of preparation has led up to Swift’s Denver shows. Fans construct special era-specific outfits, do their nails, make friendship bracelets and more in the lead-up to a Swift show, she said.
And, yes, she could get the same shirt inside the stadium Saturday when she goes to the concert, but:
“I’m not missing one song,” she said.
Jenna Sharp, who formed a friendship with Francis in the line early Thursday, said the merch line was “about the experience.”
“You don’t even understand, the excitement is crazy,” said Maddie Smith, who said she had been lined up since around 7 a.m.
Swift is set to play two shows at Empower Field Friday and Saturday nights. The Eras Tour stage was under construction since Tuesday.