UF to sell alcohol at men’s basketball games

[Brad McClenny/The Gainesville Sun]

Special to Gatorsports.com

The Florida Athletic department will unveil a pilot program to sell alcohol in select concession areas of Gators men’s basketball games beginning with Tuesday’s season opener vs. North Florida, UF announced Monday.

This current change in policy is only for men’s basketball games in the O’Connell Center.
Florida will incorporate conference-wide alcohol management expectations, which include:

* Alcoholic beverages will be sold and dispensed only at designated stationary locations;
* Alcoholic beverages will not be sold by vendors within the seating areas;
* Identification check will be required at every point of sale to prevent sales to minors;
* Alcoholic beverage sales are limited to beer and wine only
* Fans, with valid legal IDs, will be permitted to only buy a maximum of two drinks at a time
* Alcohol must be dispensed into cups;
* Safe server training and additional training for staff to handle high risk situations is required; and
* Sales and distribution of alcohol will stop at the start of the second half.

Centerplate, which operates concessions in the O’Connell Center on behalf of the UAA will continue train staff in accordance with their Responsible Alcohol Service Policies and State Laws. The O’Connell Center staff will also have staff training with the TEAM Coalition (Techniques in Effective Alcohol Management).

The Southeastern Conference announced a revision to its existing limitations on the availability of alcoholic beverages at athletics events at the conference’s spring meetings in Destin. Under this revised policy, each institution in the conference now has the autonomy to determine the permissibility of selling alcoholic beverages in its athletics venues, subject to certain conference-wide alcohol management expectations.

The revised SEC policy on alcohol availability, requires any SEC institution choosing to permit alcohol sales at athletics events to establish policies governing the sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages consistent with requirements established and agreed to by the Conference membership.  In the past, SEC athletics programs have been prohibited from selling alcohol in public areas of SEC athletics venues.