Tailgaters at The Rock

App State football fans tailgate at Kidd Brewer Stadium, also known as ‘The Rock.’

It’s a tradition that goes back for decades.

A brilliant autumn day. A big football game to be played. A chance to relive some college memories and gather with friends from the past and the present.

And the chance to eat and drink with those friends.

The way thousands of football fans do this is, of course, by tailgating. Before the trek to the stadium is done, the trek to the pregame tailgate party comes first for those fans.

Pregame at Appalachian State is no different. Whether the food is prepared at home before the trip to Boone, or prepared on grills in the parking lot, there is no shortage of fans having a big lunch before the big game.

Fans generally have enough time to make the trip to Boone, be it the Charlotte or the Triad areas, and still be able to have lunch and get to the game on time. Four of the Mountaineers’ home games begin at 3:30 p.m. Another game, App State’s showdown with Texas State on Nov. 23, starts at 2:30 p.m. and the Mountaineers’ game with Georgia Southern on Halloween night begins at 8 p.m.

“We want people to arrive early and stay late to avoid some of the congestion because things are going to be more congested, no doubt about it,” Appalachian State Athletic Director Doug Gillin said. “Follow the tailgating rules, have fun and be loud.”

Appalachian State’s football tailgating policy states that fans are permitted to just one parking space per car. Fans are allowed to set up a tailgate as long as they don’t block access to another parking space or block other vehicles passing through the lots.

Charcoal and propane grills are the only permissible sources for heat for cooking. Hot coals from the charcoal grills must also be completely extinguished with water prior to leaving the tailgating site.

Those who consume alcoholic beverages must be of drinking age and must be able to present a valid driver’s license or a photo ID upon request.

Bathrooms are available for use in Trivette Hall, Plemmons Student Union, Central Dining Hall and at Kidd Brewer Stadium. Nobody is allowed to enter a residence hall without a proper escort, for safety reasons.

Fans are also asked to clean up after their tailgates. Trash bags are also handed out in various parking lots throughout the day and trash containers are located near these lots.

Gillin said the biggest change for fans this year is the App State athletic department will be permitted to sell alcohol in Kidd Brewer Stadium. Gillin said the concessions stands would have food and alcoholic beverages available for fans to purchase.

“Come in and eat concessions,” Gillin said. “We’ll have all sorts of drinks. We’ll be able to serve alcohol in the stands now. You’ll be able to come on in now and have a beer and some food.”

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