Beer Stories

Babs in the City: Tailgating Season

With a long history of football rivalary the U of U and BYU have different styles of tailgating on game day.


portrait of Babs De Lay

Babs headshotThe Olympics are long gone and school for many is half-way done for the fall semester. That means we’re deep into football and tailgating season!

 The first two football games at the U of U were against the YMCA and the the Utah Agricultural College, now known as Utah State University, back in 1892. The first BYU football team played the U of U in 1896 and won 12-0. That year, the Cougars also played the Elks, the Crescents, the YMCA, the Wheel Club of Denver and Westminster College.

The really weird part of collegiate history in Utah is the fact that in its second year of playing (in 1900), the BYU football team had an accidental football-related death and football was banned from all LDS Church schools until 1919. (The son of a member of the LDS General Board of Education died of football injuries that year and another player was maimed for life during a game.)

Pre-game parties have always been a great way for fans to build up energy and team spirit, and our University of Utah stadium parking lot is a great example of ‘rah, rah, sis boom bah!’ before home games. And although drinking alcoholic beverages is illegal on college campuses and banned by the NCAA, it’s okay on game days to have adult beverages in the parking lots. To wit:

-open beer cans and bottles are allowed in most parking lots

-alcohol cannot be served to minors under the age of 21

-beer trucks, kegs, open bars, and people in ‘possession of exorbitant amount of alcohol will not be permitted in any U of U parking area

-public intoxication or disorderly conduct will not be tolerated

-the sale of alcohol in parking lots or stadiums is prohibited

 Alcohol and tobacco products are not allowed at the U of U, on the LDS Institute property there, nor at any parking lot at BYU or any other college campus statewide. But there are exceptions.

The laws are simple yet quirky because you can have a wedding at the top of the tower at Rice Eccles stadium, or a law firm can serve liquor at the top of the new S.J. Quinney College of Law Building. Why? Because those kinds of events are not official U of U college events, but private events that require a DABC permit and a trained bartender. I always had ‘private events’ in my dorm room at Westminster College, but methinks I would have been suspended had I been caught guzzling a beer!

Bottom line: no drinking at sporting events in arenas or fields—ever—at any school in the state. But parking lots? Well, that may be just fine if you’re part of a tailgating crew. 

Babs De Lay: Broker Urban Utah Homes & Estates

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