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Fans Asked to Comply With Tailgating Guidelines

Sept. 13, 2005

Baskets of food, coolers with drinks, CU chairs, TVs and satellites, grills, games, radios and tents. Pre and post game activities, meals and fellowship are an integral part of the Clemson home game. Our opening game against Texas A&M had it all, including a great win over the Aggies!

The win over top ranked Texas A&M was exciting. Our game day environment, set in the shadows of the foothills beside a beautiful lake, was the envy of many Aggie fans and administration. The Athletic Department, as well as President Barker, received many compliments from Texas A&M. The renewed focus on sportsmanship under the leadership of a University and Community Task Force paid big dividends with both our fans and our opponents. The entire experience – setting, facilities, fans, football team, food came together in a unique way that actually served as an ambassador of this University. Solid Orange, “It’s About Pride,” demonstrated itself literally in a sea of orange clothing but also in the spirit and enthusiasm our fans displayed.

It was an opportunity for our Office of External Affairs to get a game behind us we worked through various challenges to improve the logistics of our game day environment. As we prepared for the parking, there were not only changes in assignments, but evaluations of sizes of spaces and number of cars per lot. Always, access and safety were considered in the new arrangements. Our staff was on location in assigned lots, observing, talking with you and receiving feedback to continuously improve what is both a wonderful tradition and a growing trend…..tailgating and tents.

External Affairs does not want to impinge a policy on tailgating but rather appeal to our readers of the Orange and White and every other Clemson home game tailgater. There must be self-discipline and parameters on tailgating. Getting along with neighboring fans and respecting each other’s space is essential to continuing a good home game environment.

The first parameter must always be safety and access for emergency personnel. It is extremely important we protect the areas that are marked off so emergency vehicles can reach people and places should the need arise. One particular area that caused concern was Lot 4 parking. The road paralleling the moat obviously remains clear. Our fire marshal also recommended we divide the lot into quadrants keeping clear access on a crossed roadway in the center of the lot. This is not for setting up tents even after the loot is full. The open roadway is for EMS in case of emergency.

Secondly, the numbered parking spaces of others must be protected. Setting up your tent in someone else’s numbered space is unacceptable. Even moving the numbered place card to widen your area and lessen your neighbor’s space is off-limits. These non-negotiables are best adhered to through respect and self-discipline but our Office will enforce safety and IPTAY numbered parking privileges.

Beyond the safety and numbered spots, IPTAY is requesting your cooperation to help make the game day experience special through self policing. We don’t want to micromanage the tailgating environment but rather will ride through the lots to provide help and guidance. A lot of time and thought went into the design of our lots, the markings and the traffic flow; please respect the directions and sizes of the lots that all of our fans can enjoy the pre-game festivities. When someone chooses to do otherwise, it impacts people, plans and the organization. Our parking committee meets weekly to review, revise and/or improve the situation. Offer us your suggestion rather than trying it out. Most of all we want to thank the thousands of you who cooperate in helping us park a small city as part of every Clemson home game.

Finally, Our Tiger team has a great start to the 2005 season. Excitement, support and enthusiasm are building. The Miami game at 3:30 p.m. is perfect timing for both pre and post game tailgating. Please plan to arrive early as we expect a large crowd. Bring your baskets of food, coolers with drinks, CU chairs, TVs and satellites, grills, games, radios, tents. Wear orange. Practice sportsmanship. Respect the space of your parking lot neighbor. Solid Orange…It’s About Pride.