Tailgating Banned At Dodger Stadium

If you were planning on sharing a beer while tailgating with Alyssa Milano you’d better not do it at Dodger Stadium. First it was open flames and grills at the Super Bowl. Now it is alcohol in the parking lots at Dodger Stadium. Apparently tailgating has become Public Enemy No. 1 when it comes to security and promoting a “family friendly” environment. So instead of solving the problem let’s just ban tailgating entirely.

Earlier last week, the Los Angeles Dodgers issued a press release reaffirming their commitment to the enforcement of alcohol policies inside and outside of Dodger Stadium. In a nutshell, they have banned fans from bringing alcohol into the parking lot. Not that you HAVE to have alcohol present to technically host a tailgate party but many would argue that having a beer or two is a big part of the tailgating experience. Here are some highlights from the Dodgers press release:

Fans are not permitted to bring alcohol onto the premises, and the club will increase its signage and patrols in the parking lots to ensure continued enforcement of this policy. Violators are subject to ejection.

So if you are caught with a beer in your hand while tailgating you are kicked out of the parking lot? Oh that’s smart! Let’s force people who have been drinking to get in their cars and drive home. What’s the over/under on lawsuits the Dodgers will be named in for creating dangerous DUI situations and potentially fatal auto accidents?

When the Dodgers begin their next homestand, April 30 through May 10, fans will find increased signage outside the parking entrances and in the parking lots, in English and Spanish. Security officers will increase patrols of the parking lots.

So security and police officers will be the official checkers to make sure fans aren’t drinking? What are they going to do? Look in every red plastic cup to make sure it doesn’t have a potentially offending beer contained within? Don’t these people have more pressing concerns to attend to?

From Day 1, I have preached responsible tailgating and asked tailgaters to maintain a level of respect for others. It just seems that a rash of bad behavior by a small group of people has forced this ridiculous policy on all Dodger fans. It just smacks of throwing the baby out with the bathwater instead of solving the problem that a small minority causes.

I would encourage the LA Dodgers to reconsider this policy and encourage responsible tailgating rather than a complete alcohol ban. The only way to get the message across to the Dodgers would be to do two things. 1) Write a letter to the Dodgers telling them you will not attend a game because of their ban on tailgating. 2) Stick to your guns and not go to the games.

If the Dodgers see a dip in attendance and have a stack of letters explaining why people are staying away they might reconsider. But words without action are not taken seriously. Boycott their games, in person and refuse to watch them on TV, until tailgating returns.