Ra­zor­back Ath­let­ics to ex­pand al­co­hol sales at Don­ald W. Reynolds Ra­zor­back Sta­dium

The Saline Courier - - SPORTS - Spe­cial to the Courier

FAYETTEVIL­LE – Be­gin­ning with the 2019 sea­son, fans at­tend­ing foot­ball games at Don­ald W. Reynolds Ra­zor­back Sta­dium will be able to pur­chase beer and wine in pub­lic ar­eas of the sta­dium. Al­co­holic bev­er­ages at Ra­zor­back foot­ball games have been avail­able since 2014, but pre­vi­ously have only been avail­able in suites and pri­vate club ar­eas. The pro­gram will now be ex­panded to cre­ate availabili­ty for the pur­chase of beer and wine to fans 21 years or older within des­ig­nated pub­lic ar­eas in and around the sta­dium.

In May, the South­east­ern Con­fer­ence an­nounced re­vi­sion of a pol­icy that had pre­vi­ously re­stricted the sale of al­co­hol in pub­lic ar­eas of ath­let­ics venues. Un­der the re­vised pol­icy, each in­sti­tu­tion within the con­fer­ence now has the au­ton­omy to de­ter­mine the per­mis­si­bil­ity of sell­ing al­co­holic bev­er­ages in its ath­let­ics venues, sub­ject to cer­tain con­fer­ence-wide al­co­hol man­age­ment ex­pec­ta­tions.

At this time, War Me­mo­rial Sta­dium also an­tic­i­pates em­ploy­ing an ex­panded al­co­hol sales pro­gram for Ra­zor­back Foot­ball games. No de­ci­sion has been made con­cern­ing the ex­pan­sion of al­co­hol sales to other on-cam­pus ath­let­ics venues, in­clud­ing Bud Wal­ton Arena and Baum-walker Sta­dium.

“By ex­pand­ing our es­tab­lished al­co­holic bev­er­ages pro­gram to in­clude the sale of beer and wine in pub­lic ar­eas of Don­ald W. Reynolds Ra­zor­back Sta­dium, we are build­ing on an al­ready suc­cess­ful model while fur­ther­ing the fan ex­pe­ri­ence in a re­spon­si­ble way,” Vice Chan­cel­lor and Di­rec­tor of Ath­let­ics Hunter Yu­rachek said. “Work­ing in co­or­di­na­tion with cam­pus of­fi­cials and within es­tab­lished guide­lines adopted by the SEC, we will now be able to of­fer this game-day amenity as an op­tion to fans while work­ing to fur­ther ed­u­cate Univer­sity of Arkansas stu­dents and the gen­eral pub­lic about safe and re­spon­si­ble con­sump­tion.

“We are im­ple­ment­ing a num­ber of cor­re­spond­ing ini­tia­tives aimed at pre­vent­ing un­der­age con­sump­tion and pro­mot­ing re­spon­si­ble choices, in­clud­ing a ‘We ID Pro­gram,” and a des­ig­nated driver and ride-share pro­gram. In many cases at other Power 5 con­fer­ence in­sti­tu­tions, al­co­hol-re­lated in­ci­dents at events have de­creased fol­low­ing the in­tro­duc­tion of a for­mal al­co­hol sales and ed­u­ca­tional pro­gram. As with other game-day op­tions, we re­al­ize in­di­vid­u­als will ul­ti­mately make their own choices on whether to uti­lize these ex­panded op­por­tu­ni­ties. Our fo­cus will be con­tin­u­ing to work with cam­pus of­fi­cials, UAPD, the SEC and oth­ers to en­sure that fans of all ages can en­joy their gameday ex­pe­ri­ence.”

Con­sis­tent with SEC guide­lines, al­co­holic bev­er­ages will be sold and dis­pensed only at des­ig­nated sta­tion­ary lo­ca­tions and not by ven­dors in seat­ing ar­eas. Iden­ti­fi­ca­tion checks will be re­quired of ev­ery per­son at the point of each sale and al­co­hol will be dis­pensed in cups. A limit of two serv­ings per per­son will be al­lowed in each trans­ac­tion. Sales of al­co­hol will be halted at the end of the third quar­ter of the game.

A new pro­gram will al­low fans to get a game-day dis­count from Lyft when us­ing

the ride-share ser­vice at Ra­zor­back foot­ball games. A

des­ig­nated driver aware­ness pro­gram will also be im­ple­mented, en­cour­ag­ing fans to plan ahead on trans­porta­tion op­tions if they wish to con­sume al­co­hol on game day.

Al­co­hol will not be al­lowed in the Univer­sity of Arkansas stu­dent seat­ing sec­tion, lo­cated in the lower east grand­stand of the sta­dium. Beer and wine sale kiosks will also not be lo­cated in the im­me­di­ate prox­im­ity of the stu­dent sec­tion. In ad­di­tion, a por­tion of the pro­ceeds from al­co­hol sales will be des­ig­nated for use by the Univer­sity of Arkansas’ Di­vi­sion of Stu­dent Af­fairs for al­co­hol re­lated ed­u­ca­tion and pro­gram­ming for univer­sity stu­dents.

“We have con­fi­dence in the many mech­a­nisms be­ing put in place to en­sure that sales are limited to those 21 years or older, as well as sup­port­ing re­spon­si­ble con­sump­tion for those who are al­lowed to pur­chase beer and wine,” Se­nior As­so­ciate Vice Chan­cel­lor and Dean of Stu­dents Melissa Har­woodrom said. “We be­gin ed­u­cat­ing our stu­dents about the ef­fects of al­co­hol and how to act or in­ter­vene in al­co­hol­re­lated sit­u­a­tions from the time they first ar­rive on cam­pus, so the pro­ceeds from sales des­ig­nated to sup­port our ed­u­ca­tional ef­forts will be put to good use.”

Ra­zor­back Ath­let­ics will work with its con­ces­sion­aire part­ner Levy to im­ple­ment the ex­panded pro­gram, in­clud­ing train­ing for gameday staff re­lated to SEC al­co­hol man­age­ment guide­lines, Univer­sity pol­icy and state and lo­cal reg­u­la­tions gov­ern­ing al­co­hol sales and con­sump­tion. All servers will be trained to iden­tify pub­lic in­tox­i­ca­tion in order to refuse ser­vice to any fan who ap­pears im­paired. Se­cu­rity per­son­nel re­serve the right to eject or ar­rest fans who are in­tox­i­cated or share al­co­holic bev­er­ages with mi­nors.

As has been the case in pre­vi­ous sea­sons, fans are en­cour­aged to re­port any un­ruly be­hav­ior or in-game se­cu­rity or guest ser­vices con­cerns to sta­dium and law en­force­ment per­son­nel by tex­ting the key­word “HOGS,” your spe­cific mes­sage and sta­dium lo­ca­tion to 69050.

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