Monday, October 3, 2022

MSU Athletics announces earlier tailgating times and new bag policy for home football games

July 11, 2022
<p>Fans tailgate in preparation for the Michigan State game against Michigan on campus. Shot on Oct. 30, 2021.</p>

Fans tailgate in preparation for the Michigan State game against Michigan on campus. Shot on Oct. 30, 2021.

Photo by Lauren DeMay | The State News

Michigan State athletics has announced it will now allow Spartan football fans to tailgate earlier on game days and bring clear bags into the stadium, a reversal of the previous policy. The new policies will go into effect for the 2022 football season.

“We are excited to host our loyal passionate fans once again for an exciting home schedule at Spartan Stadium,” MSU athletic director Alan Haller said in a statement. “These are two steps in our unwavering commitment to improve the gameday fan experience.”

Designated tailgate lots will open at 7 a.m. for all kick-offs between noon and 4 p.m. and at 11 a.m. for night games. Before this change, the lots only opened at 7 a.m. for noon kickoffs, at 9 a.m. for 3:30/4 p.m. games, and 1 p.m. for night games. 

The new tailgate times only apply to Saturday games, which includes all but one of MSU’s home games, the one being the season opener against Western Michigan on Friday, September 2. 

Fans will now also be able to bring clear bags into the stadium as long as they meet MSU athletics requirements, a reversal of the previous policy where no bags were able to be brought into the stadium.

They can bring a bag that is “clear, plastic, vinyl, or PVC and does not exceed 12” x 6” x 12”, one-gallon clear plastic freezer bag (Ziploc bag or similar), or a small clutch bag, camera and binocular cases, not exceeding 4.5” x 6.5”, with or without a handle or strap.”

As always, there are exceptions for bags needed for childcare, medical or dietary purposes after being checked by security. Clear bags can be purchased on game days if needed at a Sparty’s Locker Room location, or online ahead of time at shop.msuspartans.com.

"The change in the bag policy brings Michigan State into our alignment with the NFL and most of our fellow Big Ten institutions," MSU spokesperson Matt Larson said in an email. "When fans attend events at these locations or when they follow the Spartans to the Final Four or bowl games, they are accustomed to being able to use a clear bag. We wanted to be able to provide the same convenience to our fans at Spartan Stadium, and in doing so enhance their gameday experience. Athletics worked with campus partners including MSU Police before implementing the change."

Larson also said that the change currently only applies to Spartan Stadium, but other venues on campus will be addressed at a later date.

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