STORRS, Conn. (WTNH) – How do you know when the college basketball season is upon us? First Night!

The UConn basketball programs kicked off the 2023-24 season Friday night with its annual First Night event at Gampel Pavilion.

The video above is from an earlier newscast at 5 p.m. on 10/13/2023.

The festivities began at 5 p.m. with a block party outside Gampel Pavilion for the public and UConn students. The block party featured food trucks, carnival games, a photo booth and a live DJ.

The UConn basketball student-athletes were drafted into a Blue Team and a White Team ahead of First Night, and the teams competed throughout the event.

“It’s a different experience, I can’t even describe it, I like the sense of community and belonging inside UConn campus, it’s great to be here,” freshman Keyron Haynes said.

For longtime UConn fans, First Night never gets old.

“Just the whole hype around the season, and now there is even more hype coming off the national championship, we have a ton of great recruits. We’re coming back. We’re gonna win another one,” junior Devin Demarco said.

A select number of season ticket holders were also able to claim tickets and student tickets were claimed within 15 hours, university officials said.