Students rolled into town in cars, trailers and U-Hauls starting Friday night, and by 9 a.m. Saturday seemingly never-ending lines stretched across the Yale Bowl parking lot.
By 10 a.m., many students were already soaked with beer and firing up their grills.
“Students abandoned their books for kegs and their shirts for forgotten yet photographed humiliation,” declared Alexander R. Pearson ’07.
Although many had set out at the crack of dawn, problems with the shuttle buses to the fields made some students worry that they would never even get to see The Game—or at least the parking lot.
Many students complained of late shuttle departures, lost drivers and overall confusion.
“The shuttle I was on drove around New Haven for an hour and a half. We eventually got off the bus and just walked to the stadium,” said Camilo A. Mejia ’04. “It was a mess. It was chaotic, just like it is every two years.”
More threatening to the masses of eager football fans was a temporary bomb scare that had the New Haven and Yale police cordoning off part of the Bowl’s perimeter and searching it with bomb-sniffing dogs (Please see related story, at left).
New Haven and Yale Police found an unidentifiable package just before 8 a.m. and quickly sealed off the Bowl. But the questionable package turned out to be a harmless device that would release fire-works and a banner over the stadium reading “No School on Monday”—most likely a prank by some miscreant Elis gone awry.
Despite the bad judgement of the pranksters, police finished up the search promptly and The Game’s start was not delayed.
For some of the students who began flooding the tailgates as early as 9:30 a.m., The Game inside the Bowl was not the main attraction.
Hard-core tailgaters took drastic measures to get a good spot in the lot, even sleeping on the grass outside the Bowl, in their U-Hauls with their kegs or, more comfortably, in trailers.
“We rented an RV and slept in a field last night,” said Natalie Vaz MacLean ’03.
Many could not tear themselves away from the festivities—which included beer funneling, dancing to blasting music on top of U-Hauls and consuming truck-loads of food—literally.
“I mean, who goes to The Game anyways?” said Yale sophomore Alexander Schwed as he drank beer at one of Yale’s many tailgates. “This is Ivy League football.”
For some Harvard students, the purpose of their journey from Cambridge was not the football.