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Beer stations coming to Beaver Stadium now that Penn State trustees approve selling alcohol during games

Beaver Stadium
Becky Marcinko
In this file photo, students stand in Beaver Stadium's student section during the Penn State home football game against Ball State on Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021, in University Park, Pa. The Penn State board of trustees voted Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, to have expanded alcohol sales in the stadium.

The Penn State board of trustees voted Friday to approve the university's plan to expand alcohol sales in Beaver Stadium to the general public in a move the Athletics Department says will improve the football day experience.

Alcohol sales will be limited to beer, and will not include hard seltzer, which had been discussed in an earlier meeting. A person will be able to buy two 16-ounce beers at a time, according to the information outlining the plans. The proposed prices are $10 for a domestic beer and $12 for a specialty beer.

According to Athletics, the date when beer sales will begin is being finalized and will be announced later.

“We will institute a variety of measures to ensure the expansion of alcohol sales will be done safely, while also continuing to promote the family environment and Happy Valley hospitality we are all known for," said Patrick Kraft, Athletics director.

"The athletic venues across America where alcohol is sold, there is substantial data showing a reduction in alcohol-related incidents," he said.

The vote was 28 in favor of the plan, with five trustees voting against it, including Valerie Detwiler, who questioned the reasons given for doing it. She said Athletics provided trustees with projected income and expenses from beer sales, including projected profits of about $2.5 million at the end of year three.

"How will $2.5 million move the needle in an organization of our size?" she said.

“Fans who want alcohol to be a part of their day have the opportunity to do so before and after the game," Detwiler said. "Selling beer in the stadium will have a negative impact on the game-day experience for families and in turn our future students.”

Athletics' plan includes having mobile beer stations placed around the stadium, but away from student seating sections. Along with having staff check ID, alcohol sales will stop at the end of the third quarter.

Alcohol had previously been allowed in the stadium's enclosed suites.

Penn State is working with an outside company, Oak View Group, on the plan. Eight other Big Ten schools sell alcohol at home games.

Anne Danahy is a reporter at WPSU. She was a reporter for nearly 12 years at the Centre Daily Times in State College, Pennsylvania, where she earned a number of awards for her coverage of issues including the impact of natural gas development on communities.
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