Earlier this month, we reported that Purdue athletic director, Mike Bobinski, was looking at possibly expanding alcohol sales throughout Ross-Ade Stadium. Today, Purdue Athletics announced that starting this season, both Ross-Ade Stadium and Mackey Arena would have beer and wine sold throughout the respective venues. However, alcohol will not be sold “immediately adjacent to the respective student sections.”
“We had extensive discussions with campus police and safety and security, and what we learned is that our fans have responded very favorably to being able to purchase beer and wine on the South End Zone Patio,” Purdue vice president and athletics director Mike Bobinski said. “The atmosphere in the South End Zone is very positive, and there have been fewer alcohol-related incidents on gamedays since its inception. As a result, in an attempt to further enhance our gameday experience and provide an additional amenity for our fans, we believe the time is right to offer this expanded opportunity.
“At the same time, fan safety and enjoyment remain our top priorities, and we will closely monitor the expanded service to ensure that our objectives are being met."
According to the release, alcohol sales will cease at the end of the 3rd quarter at Ross-Ade, after the under-12 timeout in the 2nd half at men’s basketball, and at the end of the 3rd quarter at women’s basketball games.
There is a catch: Ross-Ade will now have a no-reentry policy starting this season. As you may recall, Ross-Ade was one of the few stadiums in the B1G and Division 1 that allowed fans to re-enter the stadium after leaving in the middle of the game. With the new alcohol sales, this will no longer be allowed and fans will no longer be allowed to re-enter, consistent with the current policy at Mackey Arena “and adhering to best-practice recommendations received after an event operations/security review performed during the 2016 football season.”
Whatever you might think of the new alcohol sales, it’s time to drink up this fall. Those new lights aren’t going to pay for themselves.