Editorial: Finally! Beer at games!


Collegian Editorial Board


This past Saturday, alcohol was served to the general public at Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium for the first time in its history, and it couldn’t have come soon enough.

Beer and wine have been available for purchase since the stadium opened in 2016, but only for those in premium seating (luxury box, loge). It didn’t seem fair that people with potentially more money were exclusively the only ones allowed to be served. 

The Board of Regents unanimously approved a bill that would allow all six universities in the BOR to sell alcohol at sporting events this past June. Ten out of the 11 schools in the Missouri Valley Football Conference (MVFC) offer alcohol sales in some capacity, whether it be to all fans or just those in premium seating. North Dakota State is the lone school that does not allow any sales at home football games.

“We’ve had alcohol in our premium section for years,” said Jeff Holm, Senior Associate AD for Facilities and Operations. “We kind of knew what to expect. People were enjoying themselves, much like they have always enjoyed themselves. So, we just think this is another aspect for someone who does feel like their experience will be elevated by a cold beverage, they can do it.”

There were three kiosks set up at Saturday’s game against UC Davis located in the east, west and south concourse of the stadium. Wristbands were given to people after showing their ID at tailgating locations before the game or at the kiosks. Alcohol was sold until the end of the third quarter.

Some believe that allowing beer into football stadiums will cause a ruckus and have a bunch of drunk college students acting up. This should actually help the case, because students don’t necessarily have to down 10 beers and get drunk in a short amount of time before the game. Now, they can have a few before and have a few at the game. 

“Most typically, based on the research we’ve done and lots of people have done, when you allow alcohol to be sold in the stadium, alcohol incidents tend to actually go down,” Holm said, “and people have their theories for why that is. And that’s kind of what we found is that things were pretty smooth. And people, when they come to a game and if someone enjoys a cold beverage, they don’t necessarily want to have 10, just one or two and have a good time.”

Doug Wermedal, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, worked at the south kiosk at Saturday’s game. He said that everything ran “quite well.”

“Some changes we will try to get to before the next game are mostly signage related,” Wermedal said. “Things like indicating that payment is credit card only, that beer sales stop at the end of the third quarter and signs directing fans as to where the wrist-banding station is located.”

Hopefully, if all goes smoothly with football, sales will be extended to Frost Arena for other sporting events that will be taking place there in the future. It will draw in fans and students.