'Home Plate Tailgate' kicks off successfully

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Auburn Athletics and B&B Bartending have partnered to combine family-friendly tailgating and adult beverages with the addition of two beer gardens to the Auburn game day experience.

While the first beer garden is closed to the public for Fox Sports, the other, located in the parking lot of Auburn baseball’s Plainsman Park, is open to the public. On Tuesday, Sept. 5, the Auburn City Council approved alcoholic beverage licenses for November and October.

The council had the final call on the licenses because of their position concerning Alabama Beverage Control. Ward 3 Council Member Beth Witten said once the university approves the sale of alcohol, she feels confident that it will be sold in a controlled environment.

“To me, it’s really no different from allowing people to have tailgate tents where they bring in their own alcohol,” Witten said.

Bobby Greenawalt, president of B&B, said the “Home Plate Tailgate” was formed in conjunction with Auburn Athletics, Tigers Unlimited, Fox Sports and B&B Bartending. The intention for the tailgate, Greenawalt said, was to provide a fun, family atmosphere for fans that come to Auburn without a place to go to a traditional tailgate.

B&B Bartending is a company based out of Opelika that provides its services all over the state, including at the University of Alabama, Jacksonville State University, the University of North Alabama and UAB. B&B already works with he university regularly and with Auburn Panhellenic.

“There are several TVs people can watch other games on, there is food they can purchase, there is a live band and the location is perfect for people that want to be close to Tiger Walk and other University events,” Greenawalt said.

Greenawalt said Auburn Athletics looked into the overall fan experience and decided to expand on opportunities for fans to come to Auburn and joy the overall experience, not just game time. Greenawalt said the mission Auburn Athletics is going for, in a family-friendly game day environment, is what B&B was founded on.

B&B will be serving Miller Light, Coors Light, Blue Moon, Redds Apple Ale and Terrapin. They will have sodas and water for those underage.

“We specialize in providing safe alcohol environments, and that’s what we have worked with Athletics to provide,” Greenawalt said.

Gates are set around the edges of the tailgate to ensure that no alcoholic beverages are taken out of the controlled space, and Greenawalt said each customer is carded no matter how many times they have purchased. Greenawalt said the team monitors the customer's intake to ensure nothing gets “out of hand.”

“In my opinion, this is a much more controlled and monitored environment, so naturally I would think it would be a much safer venue for alcohol consumption than a general tailgate that anyone can attend, where there is no monitoring,” Witten said.

Sid Phelps, a country artist from Dadeville, Alabama, was the first artist to perform at the Home Plate Tailgate during the first home game against Georgia Southern. The next artist is unknown at the moment.

“It’s a great tailgate spot without having to bring your own equipment and find a spot,” Greenawalt said. “It’s much easier than finding that spot and sitting in it for three days to use it for one.” 

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