Game's Student Tailgate At Ohiri

College reaffirms tighter alcohol and U-Haul restrictions

The College will now allow student groups to tailgate on Ohiri Field at this year’s Harvard-Yale Game, reversing an earlier plan to set aside a separate area for House Committee (HoCo) tailgates.

But the stricter alcohol restrictions proposed by the Office of Student Activities last week, including a ban on U-Hauls, will still go into effect at this year’s Game.

Administrators reversed the decision to have a separate HoCo tailgating area at a meeting last night with HoCo chairs and Undergraduate Council leaders. The College delegated responsibility to HoCos and the council to hash out the details of the tailgates—including the admissions policies for the tailgate area, ID checks for alcoholic beverages and parking assignments, said Zac Corker ’04, the College’s new assistant for social programming.

Ohiri Field will now be the only area for undergraduate tailgates, eliminating the concern expressed by council President Matthew W. Mahan ’05 at Monday’s council meeting that dividing students between a general admissions area and an official HoCo area would segregate HoCos.

In spite of the U-Haul ban, HoCos and other student groups can set up their tailgate area the day before The Game, Corker said. Security will be available to protect any property the groups leave at the field overnight, he added.


The Council and HoCos must come up with a formal plan for the tailgates in time for a meeting on Monday with Boston Police Department (BPD) officials, Assistant Dean of the College Paul J. McLoughlin II said.

A memo issued to HoCo members last Thursday suggested setting up a single ID check tent where students of legal age would be issued wristbands, moving HoCo tailgates to Ohiri Field and limiting keg or beer truck orders to a single distributor, United Liquors of Cambridge.

No student groups will be allowed to operate kegs, but the Council and HoCos are likely to opt to order beer trucks from United Liquors, Mahan said. If they do, United Liquors employees will check IDs before giving students beer.

Before United Liquors can be contracted, both Capt. William Evans of the BPD and the Boston Licensing Commission must approve the plan, McLoughlin said.

Although HoCo and student group tailgates will still be operated by students, security officials will be checking the cars brought into the tailgates to make sure they comply with restrictions on the amount of alcohol permitted in one vehicle.

According to Masssachusetts law, a person can transport no more than 20 gallons of beer or 3 gallons of other alcohol, and no more than one gallon of pure alcohol by volume. Although kegs contain fewer than 20 gallons of beer, Corker said they are still prohibited.

McLoughlin estimated that around 150 tailgating parking spots will be available at Ohiri Field to cover both Harvard and Yale students.

Previous plans for a central ID tent where students must first secure a wristband to be served an alcoholic beverage will likely be scrapped in favor of carding by TIPS-certified servers, Mahan said.

McLoughlin attributed the increased administrative oversight in tailgate planning to pressure from BPD.

Evans, the police captain, has made preventing underage drinking one of his highest priorities and has already declared that Boston College tailgates for the 2004-2005 academic year will be dry, McLoughlin said.

“One of the concerns of Captain Evans is that he’s sending an inconsistent message,” McLoughlin said. He said that the presidents of all the universities in the Boston area will be attending a meeting with the BPD on Oct. 20.

But McLoughlin said that the nature of Harvard’s social scene is significantly different than that of neighboring colleges, and that allowing tailgates to serve alcohol is not inconsistent with Evans’ current policy.

“I believe if we put forth a plan with checks and balances in place, it will be approved,” he said.

The IM sports fields, the site of the 2002 undergraduate tailgates, will be reserved for alumni tailgates, and the available tailgate area around the stadium is reserved for Friends of Harvard Football, Corker said.

—Staff writer Margaret W. Ho can be reached at —Staff writer Joshua P. Rogers can be reached at

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