JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) — East Tennessee State University (ETSU) will sell beer at football games starting this Saturday when the Buccaneers host conference-rival Chattanooga.
Fans will have to present a valid, government-issued ID verifying that they are at least 21 years or older in order to get a wristband for purchasing beer. Fans can purchase one wristband per transaction with a maximum of three drink tabs on each wristband.
“It’s the students that made this happen, working for so long with the administration,” ETSU Student Government Association President Mason Mosier told News Channel 11 shortly after the news went out via a university press release.
“For the last five years, every SGA president has brought this up to the administration at least one time during their presidency,” Mosier said.
Drinks will cost $9 each and fans will be able to choose from five types of beer and one seltzer, according to ETSU. Only two drink tabs may be exchanged at a time.
ETSU Athletics Director of Communication Kevin Brown said the drinks will be served in 16-ounce cups. Beer selections will include Bud Light, Miller Light, Michelob Ultra, Budweiser and Coors Light, while the seltzer on offer will be White Claw Black Cherry. ETSU has contracts with Cherokee Distributing and Holston Distributing.
Brown said the selection could broaden at some point, though not this season, to include craft or local brews. He said ETSU has a beer sale permit with the City of Johnson City that’s valid through December of this year.
Wristbands and drink tabs will no longer be available once the game hits the 7-minute mark of the third quarter. Beer distribution tents will close at the end of the third quarter.
Mosier said he actually believes the new policy could help quell some of the binge drinking he said has occurred prior to games.
“At the tailgates people are drinking…and also sometimes getting really intoxicated before they enter the game,” Mosier said.
“I’m certain that the students and the community and everyone that’s at the games wants this to be something we do responsibly,” he said of the new policy.
Wristbands will be available at:
- East side concession stand (where Bookstore was previously located)
- A tent located on the west side behind the Ramsey Tower
Distribution tents that will be set up include:
- Four on the west side
- One on each end of the Ramsey Tower
- One near each gate entrance
- One in the north end zone by the Legacy Wall
- Two on the east side
- One on the walkway behind sections V and W
- One to the left of the east entrance
This Saturday’s game between ETSU and rival Chattanooga is scheduled to kick off at 7:30 p.m.
News Channel 11 has requested contract details regarding revenue sharing from the sales.