Welcome to The Jungle: New tailgate spot opens Saturday

Friday, September 10, 2010 | 5:55 p.m. CDT; updated 6:03 p.m. CDT, Sunday, September 12, 2010

COLUMBIA — The Jungle will be crawling with Tigers Saturday afternoon as the Missouri Students Association hosts the grand opening of its new student tailgate spot.

Since the closing of “Frat Pit” in 2007 and Reactor Field last year, students have gone without a designated tailgating location for MU home football games.

MSA hopes The Jungle will be a solution to this problem.

According to the MSA website, “The Jungle will provide a new, safe way for students of the University of Missouri to tailgate before the start of every home football game.”

The Jungle will be equipped with popular tailgating games such as washers, ladder golf, footballs and volleyballs, which can be checked out with a student ID. This weekend there will also be music, courtesy of campus radio station KCOU, and free sandwiches from Sub Shop.

Tailgating will begin four hours prior to kickoff and the tailgaters will be required to clear the spaces three hours after the end of the football game.

Only student organizations will be able to reserve spots at the tailgate, but guests of the organizations are welcome.

Reservations can be made until noon of the Friday before the home game. Reservations are currently being taken for the San Diego State University and Miami University of Ohio games. The spots cost $20 each and can accommodate up to 20 people.

According to Ben Hansen, director of the MSA Department of Student Activities, five organizations have reserved spots for tomorrow night’s game against McNeese State.  Some of these organizations include the Student Bar Association, Phi Sigma Pi and the Residence Halls Association.

“I’m disappointed only a few organizations have signed up,” Hansen said. “But I understand why — there are restrictions at The Jungle that aren’t imposed anywhere else, which make it difficult for the students to adjust to.”

The restrictions at The Jungle were necessary to form an agreement between MSA and MU to create the new tailgate spot.

The restrictions listed on The Jungle’s website include:

  • No vehicles allowed inside the lot
  • Individuals must be at least 21 years of age to consume alcohol and must be ready to provide appropriate identification upon request
  • No glass, hard alcohol, kegs or beer balls
  • No coolers over the size of 70 quarts are permitted
  • Propane grills are limited to 20 lb. tanks
  • Post-game tailgating is strictly prohibited 

Hansen said some of these restrictions may be causing apprehension among students.

“Some students feel like [The Jungle] is a trap to get caught by police, but we have made it clear if you are underage you should not drink at this spot,” Hansen said.

Despite some student concerns about drinking, MSA President Tim Noce said the responses to The Jungle have been good.

“A lot of people want to see how it will go tomorrow,” Noce said.

MSA will hold a meeting Monday to evaluate Saturday’s tailgate and make any necessary adjustments to improve for the next event.

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