The shadow of Safeco's home plate is usually reserved for the statue of Ken Griffey Jr. But this week there's a different sort of crowd making themselves right at home.
“This is the first time camping in Seattle on the street,” Pearl Jam fan Scott Wickstrom explains.
Wickstrom and his son, Reid, are part of a group hoping to be front and center for Pearl Jam, who are performing two shows at Safeco Field to help the homeless in the city.
“Awesome band. They've helped me through some tough times through their music, but they also do great things for the community,” he said.
For Reid, the concert will be his first live show and it’s how he's celebrating his 15th birthday. His mom shuttled a few friends from Auburn and a cake for an impromptu party on the sidewalk near their tent.
“I was just sitting outside the site reading and I saw my friends come with the cake,” the teen said. “I was like ‘Wow, I have my own surprise party outside the stadium. It was pretty fun.”
The show is bringing people from around the world to Seattle. A group of fraternity brothers from various parts of the country used the concert as a sort-of reunion.
“We all graduated from Carnegie Mellon together 20 years ago-ish,” Mike Mendick said with a laugh.
The band brings back special memories.
“Pearl Jam’s the band that brought us all together,” Kevin Boyd explained.
They're ready to rock through two shows but said they're not going to join the crowd on the sidewalk.
“Maybe 20 years ago we might have done that but not now,” Jim Saxon explained. They were waiting on two more to arrive and said the concerts allow them to reconnect.
Some of those camped out in tents admit they see some irony in staying on the streets to get the best spot for a show that's raising money to help homeless people.
“The concert is about homelessness, so it's kind of like we're experiencing that. So we can help out,” Wickstrom said.
The fans say it’s about more than just music. There is a connection that seems to unite people.
“It's just bringing people together from all over the world,” Reid Wickstron explains.