The University of Virginia announced Thursday that it will join a growing number of colleges around the country this fall in selling alcohol at home football games.
According to a press release, beer, wine and hard cider will be sold at beverage gardens located inside the east and west gates of Scott Stadium. The gardens will open to the public 90 minutes before kickoff and also will include water and light snacks.
The venue will issue guests of legal drinking age bracelets, which will allow the purchase of two drinks at once and no more than four total during a game. All alcohol must be consumed inside the perimeters of each beverage garden, and sales will end at the conclusion of the third quarter.
Florida State, Illinois and Arkansas also will begin selling alcohol at home games this year, as will in-state programs James Madison, Richmond and William & Mary and ACC rivals North Carolina, N.C. State and Wake Forest. Virginia Tech sells beer and wine in its west side and south end zone club sections.
According to a story published in December by Forbes, fewer than 12 college football venues across the country sold alcohol 10 years ago. The NCAA approved alcohol sales at championship events in April 2018, and now more than 50 stadiums nationwide offer adult beverages.
Many programs hope alcohol sales will help boost sagging attendance and revenue numbers. Others hope it will curtail binge drinking at tailgate parties.
“We’re committed to improve the game-day experience for our fans,” Virginia Athletic Director Carla Williams said. “Our staff closely reviewed the survey feedback we received during and after the 2018 season and created plans to address a number of items that were consistently mentioned in the surveys. We will continue to ask our fans for their feedback so we can work to make the time they spend at Scott Stadium as enjoyable as possible.”
On Thursday, Virginia announced several other game day enhancements:
» The price of bottled water in concession stands around the stadium has been reduced to $3, and two additional hydration stations have been added with complementary water.
» Virginia has partnered with Lyft, a popular ride-hailing app, and a pick-up and drop-off locations have been established at McCormick Road (near the Chemistry Building), at the bus stop at the University Hall parking lot and at the bus stop at the McCue lower parking lot.
» There will be no more Adventures of Cavman prior to the team’s entrance. A new opening video will act as a prelude to the Cavalier on horseback galloping onto the field.
» Tim Zawacki, the voice of Virginia men’s basketball and men’s lacrosse, will be the public address voice of Cavalier football this fall.