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Minnesota will be the first Big Ten school to allow stadium alcohol sales

by Eric Thurm April 25, 2012
The Minnesota state legislature has overwhelmingly voted to pass a bill that would allow beer to be sold at TCF Bank Stadium starting this fall. Gov. Mark Dayton has said he will sign the bill into law, which would make TCF Bank Stadium the first Big Ten stadium to allow the sale of alcohol, allowing the football team to lead the conference in something, at least.

Part of the reason for the change in policy is financial—the university’s insistence on alcohol-free games had led to serious losses of revenue in recent years, which somehow came as a surprise to the athletics administration. University police also pointed out that people were coming to games drunk anyway (obviously), mooting the administration’s safety concerns about alcohol sales.

Once the law is enacted, anyone in a premium suite will be able to purchase beer in the comfort of their suite, while everyone else will have to go to designated beer gardens that will only serve alcohol through the beginning of the second half of games.

University Board Of Regents Chair Linda Cohen argued that the beer gardens would make games safer. “People wouldn’t have to rush and drink a lot before the game. They could slow down and enjoy a glass of beer while watching the game,” she said, demonstrating a lack of understanding of what most people do at football games. But if the Gophers’ next season is anything like the last one, everyone will be rushing for their next drink.

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