Krazy George to celebrate 40 years of the Wave at SJSU game

“Krazy George” Henderson is banging his drum about a big milestone coming up this week: The 40th anniversary of the Wave, the stadium phenomenon that the teacher-turned-pro cheerleader launched into sports history to the delight (and occasional eye-rolling) of fans around the world.

“The Wave interconnects the fans. It makes them part of the team,” Henderson said. “That’s what makes the Wave so special. It shows visually to the players that you love them. That’s why the Wave has gone around the world in stadiums.”

As part of the anniversary celebration, Henderson has invited fans to record themselves doing the Wave — by themselves or with a group — and share it on social media or post it on his Facebook page, www.facebook.com/krazygeorge00.

Krazy George Henderson, shown at the Santa Clara Parade of Champions on Oct. 9, 2021, will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Wave at the San Jose State football game Oct. 15. 

For anyone who hasn’t watched a live sporting event in the past four decades, the Wave is a visual spectacle created by fans standing up and sitting down in unison, section after section. Henderson — a former high school teacher who turned cheerleading into a second career when the San Jose Earthquakes arrived in 1974 — started it at a playoff game between the New York Yankees and Oakland A’s on Oct. 15, 1981, and it’s been going ever since.

“The impact it had that day at the Oakland A’s game — that was the first time it was before a massive crowd — was quite dramatic to me,” he said. “When that wave came about and all three decks were doing it after the fourth try, it was something to see.”

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That game was the first time it was captured by TV cameras, but Henderson had fans waving at Colorado Rockies hockey games at least a year earlier. But once people saw it, it caught on fast — even showing up in ’80s movies like “Field of Dreams” and “When Harry Met Sally.”

Krazy George will be celebrating the 40th anniversary Friday night when he is at San Jose State’s 7:30 p.m. homecoming football game against San Diego State at CEFCU Stadium. And, of course, he says he’ll get an anniversary wave started during the game.

The biggest challenge to that? The eastern stands at CEFCU Stadium have been removed to make room for the construction of a new Football Operations Center — meaning the Wave will have to jump from end zone to end zone. If anyone can make that happen, it’s Krazy George.

Like any inventor, Henderson is proud of his creation and embraces it as a legacy.

“I really enjoy the idea that it’ll outlive me,” he said. “It’ll never die. Somebody’s going to do it somewhere.”

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Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment

      

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