ExtremeSkins was all abuzz over the weekend about reported new tailgating policies at FedExField. Response ranged from indifferent to downright frantic, with the diehard tailgaters there concerned that their tailgating freedoms were going to be curtailed. A post from Capt. Kaos does a good job providing a sample of this reaction:
“Now this could certainly hamper the tailgating activities of a certain group of people that I know of. This is becoming a serious issue, how are we going to have any sort of unified Tailgate if we are parked in different areas?”
It’s a fair question, one taken to nearly apocalyptic extremes by Dave McKenna over at City Paper’s Cheap Seats, where he speculated that this policy change will begin “the Blackouts Era of Redskins football.”
The team just released an official response to this, which I’ll repost after the jump. The most important segments:
A new FedEx Field parking lot will be opened for thousands of Washington Redskins fans with the onset of the 2009 season, the team announced today. Additionally, new post-game traffic patterns and parking policies will be implemented to improve traffic flow in parking lots and on stadium roads.
“We expect to have more tailgaters than ever,” said Mitch Gershman, the Redskins Chief Operating Officer. “Those who want to meet with their friends will have more space, and those who want to simply park will find it easier to do so.”
The most significant new procedure will have parking attendants directing fans who wish to tailgate in more than one space to the back of lots, where they will be allowed to occupy two spaces until required for additional vehicles. Fans who wish to only park, or tailgate within their single parking spot, will be directed to the front of lots, filling the lot from front to back. Tailgating is permitted in all lots, except Platinum. Platinum lot parkers who choose to tailgate will be provided passes for Purple lots.
“Everyone who wants to tailgate should be able to tailgate. We absolutely believe that,” Gershman said. “This is designed to improve the experience for fans who want to tailgate.”
“Our outside consultant analyzed the flow on roads and in the parking lots at FedEx Field, with cameras recording the traffic patterns. What we found was that when tailgaters spread into multiple spaces, it caused congestion in the lots, and resulted in inconvenience to everyone – the fans tailgating and the fans who were just looking to park in their assigned lots,” Gershman said.
So it looks like the initial hue and cry was over an email targeted at a very small group of people, and didn’t include information that wasn’t pertinent. I’m still asking around, trying to figure out exactly what this means for the various groups who have emailed me with their concerns, but I can see how this could improve the entire parking situation.
As someone who has had enjoyable tailgates disrupted by people trying to park on top of my grill, I have to say that this doesn’t sound like a bad deal. And, as someone who has also shown up to games later than I intended and found multiple spots filled with tailgaters in lounge chairs, it sounds pretty good as well. Which seems like the definition of a win-win, if everything goes as it was explained to me.
Full release after the jump. Read more »
Tags: fedexfield, tailgating
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David Elfin of the Washington Times caught up with Clinton Portis at a golf tournament in Bethesda this morning and asked him the same question that so many of you have emailed to ask me: is there any truth to the report on ProFootballTalk that Portis and Zorn are at odds?
“How this story came about, I have no idea,” Portis said. “There’s nothing going on. There’s no beef between me and Coach Zorn. We’re on good terms at this present moment. There’s no problem.”
“I don’t know why people have that in their mind,” Portis said. “Me and Coach [Joe] Gibbs had a great relationship. We talked more than me and Coach Zorn do, but lately me and Coach Zorn been talking, trying to get on the same page. Things been going good. He understand me and I understand him.”
This had been my understanding of the situation as well, but it’s nice to hear it straight from Portis’s mouth (albeit via David Elfin’s computer). More, including Jason Campbell‘s take on the situation, here. Read more »
Tags: Clinton Portis, ClintonPortis, Jim Zorn, JimZorn
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