Getting ready for game day

The first of seven home games for the Cyclone football squad is Saturday evening, Sept. 1. For many fans, that also means the first of seven tailgate dates.

The athletics department has tweaked a few of its tailgating guidelines for the 2018 season for the safety and enjoyment of all fans. These include:

  • Tailgating should not occur on elevated surfaces such as truck beds, vehicle roofs or trailers.
  • Speakers that can stand alone or are connected to an amplifier are prohibited. Small "boom boxes" are permitted but the sound should be contained to your tailgate area (70 decibels limit, about the volume of a hair dryer).

It's not a change, but ISU police chief Michael Newton noted that state law prohibits hard liquor consumption or possession of an open bottle of hard liquor on public property -- which includes university parking lots. Tailgaters of legal age may consume beer and wine in the parking areas.

Other tailgate guidelines remain unchanged from past years:

  • Be considerate and respectful of others.
  • Limit your tailgating to your one parking space. ISU parking staff will enforce the one-space-per-pass rule.
  • Do not block the drive lanes for other vehicles to park or to access parking lots or stalls.
  • Maximum tent size is 10 feet x 10 feet.
  • No glass bottles or kegs in parking lots.
  • No open fires in parking lots.
  • Professional sound equipment, for example, a DJ booth, is prohibited without prior written approval from the athletics department.
  • Clean up your area and dispose of trash before departing.

Fans should be aware of a few other changes to the game day experience this year, including a new bag policy in the stadium and construction zone on the south side of the stadium.

Clear bags only

Earlier this month, the athletics department announced it is adopting a clear bag policy for football games at Jack Trice Stadium and all events at Hilton Coliseum. The policy is modeled after one used since 2013 by professional football teams -- with dozens of universities following suit. Fans are allowed to carry either a clear tote bag no larger than 12 by 6 by 12 inches or a one-gallon plastic freezer bag.

The idea is that clear bags are easily and quickly searched by stadium security staff, which keeps fans safer, reduces faulty bag searches and shortens fans' wait times to enter the stadium.

There are two exceptions to the restriction:

  • Small wallets or clutch bags that are no bigger than 6.5 by 4.5 inches
  • Bags containing items required for medical or child care

The athletics department provides a list of items prohibited in the stadium -- for example, beach balls, stadium seats, strollers -- and a new video on its website.

Stadium south plaza

Final landscaping work on the plaza south of the stadium will wrap up during football season, including seeding grass, planting trees and installing light poles. The construction fence will remain in place this fall to allow the grass to get established, according to project manager Jon Harvey, facilities planning and management.

The plaza is the final element of a multiphase plan to increase seating capacity in the stadium and add a club section. It serves as a visual link between the stadium and Reiman Gardens. When it's complete, the plaza will be available for use beyond football game days.