This story and interview were done by WTAW News intern Sara Hook.
Tailgating at Texas A&M home football games is going to look a little different this season.
As a multimillion dollar renovation is being completed in the green space between the Association of Former Students and Koldus buildings, the land rush is being replaced by online reservations.
Assistant director of University Center and Special Events Neil Peltier said the change was to allow out-of-town fans more equal access to tailgating spots, as well as to protect and benefit the park.
Peltier also says the online system lets them collect some information about who is utilizing the park.
Reservations for paid spots are open now, and can be booked for the entire football season or select dates.
The free ‘Virtual Landrush’ will open at 6 p.m. on the Sunday prior to each home game.
Click below for comments from Neil Peltier, visiting with WTAW’s Sara Hook.
More tailgating space, a lake for catch-and-release fishing, an amphitheater and a creamery are among the new features awaiting Texas A&M fans when Aggie Park opens on-schedule later this summer.
The Aggie Park project will include dedicated media utilities for national broadcasts, permanent Distinguished Alumni recognition and improved infrastructure. A new building will be constructed on site and operated by The Association of Former Students for year-round use, providing flexible and functional space for Aggie Ring Day and other events.
With the 2.5-year transformation nearly complete, a new online reservation system is being announced for Aggie Park on game-days: No longer will the area be part of the “land rush” in which fans — responding to a bullhorn sounding at noon a day before the big game — take off running in a competition to claim a prime spot to pitch their tents.
Instead, all tailgating in Aggie Park — both free and paid — will require making reservations through the tailgating vendor, Revel XP. This change is expected to make it more convenient for fans and offer out-of-town Aggies equal access to choice spots.
Options In Aggie Park:
The Association is creating Aggie Park with about $35 million in donated funds, including the lead gift given in memory of Shannon Lia Roberts ’86 by her husband, Wayne Roberts ’85. It soon will have more than twice the amount of space for relaxation, studying, picnics, tailgating, concerts, food trucks and more throughout the year.
The majority of the tailgating space is designated for free access. Those areas are detailed in an online map and include War Hymn Lawn, War Hymn Plaza, Post Oak Grove and Throckmorton Lawn. Throckmorton, a late addition, will not be available until the first Southeastern Conference game at Kyle Field this fall, Oct. 29, against University of Mississippi.
The remainder of tailgating space is for those paying Revel XP for a turn-key experience with a range of full-service options, including iced coolers, tables, chairs, linens and more.
Revel XP will handle reservations for both paid and free options.
To reserve a free or paid tailgating spot, visit Texas A&M’s tailgating guidance page.
The timeline for the booking process is different depending on which of the two tailgating options is selected.
Free tailgating: The virtual land rush reservation process will start at 6 p.m. on the Sunday prior to each home game. For instance, for the first game against Sam Houston Sept. 3, the process opens Aug. 28 at 6 p.m.
A few policies:
- Individuals may reserve only up to two (2) free 15-by-15 plots per game.
- Patrons can’t book more than one game at a time, as reservations do not carry over.
- Fans must tailgate in the spots they are assigned.
- Selling a free space that was reserved is prohibited and will result in the loss of tailgating privileges.
- The old land rush process will continue for tailgating around Reed Arena and other campus locations. The guidelines for tailgating are detailed online.
Paid tailgating: Reservations for paid spots are available now and locations can be booked for the entire football season or select dates.
Direct questions and feedback to 979-862-7547.