Students should be aware of tailgating rules

The UNA student section cheers on the Lions during a homecoming game against Western Oregon Oct. 4, 2014. Students must abide by rules pertaining to alcohol consumption and music selection, among others, while tailgating. 

Students fill the Spirit Quad in the south end zone of Braly Stadium every home football game to tailgate and support the Lions. As students gather to fill the Spirit Quad one last time before the season ends, Nov. 5 at 1:30 p.m. for UNA’s final home game against West Florida, there are some rules they need to keep in mind.

1. Drinking

No one under the age of 21 is allowed to consume an alcoholic beverage, according to Alabama law. Underage drinking is not permitted at tailgating.

Police officers are at Spirit Quad to watch for underage drinking, disorderly conduct and open containers, said UNA Police Captain Les Jackson.

Freshman Sebastian Motely said although he is old enough to drink, he is “unaware of the rules for tailgating.”

There are no kegs allowed at tailgating, according to the UNA athletics website.

All alcoholic beverages are to be in a closed container, according to Alabama’s open container law, Jackson said.

Tailgating attendees must keep their alcohol within the tailgating area. They are not allowed to take it anywhere outside of that parameter, including into the stadium, Jackson said.

2. Trash

Tailgating participants need to be considerate when disposing of their trash, according to the UNA athletics website.

“While we encourage you to enjoy yourselves, we ask that you bring your own trash bags and help keep Spirit Hill and Spirit Quad beautiful,” according to the website. “Upon departure, if there is any trash you cannot take with you, we ask that you collect it and deposit it in trash bags between the two trees at the base of Spirit Hill and by the SGA Tent on Spirit Quad.”

3. Music

Students can play music in their tailgating area as long as the lyrics are clean, said Game Operations and Facilities Manager Matt Daniels.

“No band or DJ is permitted at individual tents,” according to the UNA athletics website. “Please keep individual ‘radio’ music to a reasonable volume in respect to those around you. Anyone not keeping within these guidelines will be asked to leave.”

4. Tents

UNA encourages tents to be 10×10, and no other school tents are allowed, Daniels said.

“Anyone breaking this guideline will be asked to take their tent down,” according to the UNA athletics website. “Tents are available for purchase at the UNA bookstore.”

Purple, gold and white tents are preferable, according to the UNA website.

Tailgating is open to everyone. Anyone can bring a tent to tailgating as long as they reserve the spot. Forms for tailgating reservations are on the UNA website, Daniels said.

Once the form is complete, people can either email it to UNA Athletics graduate assistant Kyle Conkle at [email protected], fax it to him at 256-765-4685 or deliver it to the UNA Ticket Office in front of Flowers Hall between 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday, according to the website.

“It’s not just a student tailgating area,” Daniels said. “We are all for having fun, but at the same time, we need to do it the right way.”

In conclusion:

Students have been following the rules so far, he said.

“Students have done a great job this year of creating a fun vibrant atmosphere at the quad,” Daniels said. “We have been very excited about their turnout and the way they handle themselves down there.”

Tailgating is always a blast, said junior Benjamin Schoenbachler.

“I’ve been going to tailgating for years,” Schoenbackler said. “ It’s a lot of food and fun.”

But students still need to be mindful while tailgating, Daniels said.

“We just ask for students to be responsible,” Daniels said. “At the end of the day, you represent UNA, even at the tailgate.”