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Release: Aug. 17, 1999

New UI tailgate tradition offers alcohol-free activities, job opportunities

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- This football season, alcohol-free tailgating at the University of Iowa heralds a new take on an old tradition for all interested Hawkeye fans and students. And at least for the first tail-gate on Sept. 4, it offers opportunities for the career-minded.

This year, for the first time, the UI is designating one parking lot near Kinnick Stadium as an alcohol-free tail-gate area for all home games. The alcohol-free tailgates will be in Lot 14, located just south of Slater Residence Hall at the northeast corner of Melrose and Grand Avenues.

"You don’t have to park in Lot 14 to participate in our tail-gate," says Julie Phye, coordinator of the Stepping Up Project, one of the lead sponsors for the tail-gates. "This new event is open to everyone: students, adult fans and their children – even students and fans from the opposing teams. We will have games, music, food and beverages. The only thing we won’t have is alcoholic beverages."

Joining the Stepping Up Project as co-sponsor for the first pre-game tailgate is Pella Corp., which will bring together Iowa and Nebraska students who are being recruited by the company.

"We’re always looking for new ways to recruit students, says Al Carlson, manager of strategic recruitment for Pella Corp. "When my colleagues at the UI told me about the Stepping Up Project’s alcohol-free tailgate event, it was a perfect fit for us. We’re bringing in 50 Nebraska students to meet and mingle with our Iowa recruits."

Carlson said his company, which recruits students for positions in engineering, business, information technology and sales, plans to implement this type of student recruitment for other Iowa campuses.

Football fans who park in Lot 14 will receive coupons good for free food and beverages. Like all UI football parking lots, the alcohol-free parking area opens at 7 a.m. Parking is $5 per car in all UI lots.

The alcohol-free tail-gate effort is being sponsored by UI and community groups. Community sponsors include: Dain Rauscher, Mercy Hospital, Trinity Episcopal Church, New Song Episcopal Church, and the UI Episcopal Chaplaincy. UI student group sponsors are: UI Student Government, the Interfraternity Council and the Panhellenic Association; Associated Residence Halls; and KRUI, the UI’s student-run radio station. The UI Parents Association is also a sponsor.

The Stepping Up Project is a community and campus coalition to reduce the harmful effects of high-risk drinking and is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and administered by the American Medical Association. For more information about the alcohol-free tail-gate or the Stepping Up Project, call Julie Phye at (319) 335-1349.