UPs to enforce policies

By Claudia Curry

Even though NIU is expecting a larger crowd for this weekend’s Homecoming football game, the new tailgating policy changes will be enforced strongly as in previous games this fall.

University Police Lt. Ron Williams said, “There will be no changes in the policies (from the last two games) that I am aware of. However, we will have additional people brought out to work with the force because of the large home game crowd.”

Univeristy Police Captain James Webster said, “We will have the same number of people working the Homecoming weekend as we would other home games. Hopefully, we will have about 40 people helping out with the game.”

Webster said the extra staff will be in the tailgating and parking areas looking out for vandalism.

Webster said kegs and bottles are strictly prohibited at tailgating. “If anyone tries to sneak a keg in and gets caught, they’ll lose the keg. It will be confiscated and they will lose the deposits, too.”

“The tailgating policies will be enforced as usual. We will be looking for kegs and bottles,” he said. “We will be checking for underaged drinking and disorderly people.”

Anyone behaving in a rowdy or disorderly manner will be notified, not just those underaged, Williams said.

People might not be initially arrested if caught breaking university tailgating policies. Webster said there are options for the officers to take when enforcing the tailgating policies. They can ask the violators to leave the area or refer them to the university judicial board.

Jon Dalton, NIU vice president for student affairs, said NIU also will be using student marshalls to help enforce tailgating policies during the Homecoming game.

If policy violators refuse to leave the tailgating area when asked, the officers have the option to arrest them for trespassing, Webster said.

Webster said, “We really haven’t had a problem with tailgating this year. At the last home game people were out of the tailgating area by 10 or 15 minutes after kick-off.

“People attending the games and tailgating this year have been very adult about following the policies,” he said.

Dalton said, “We want people to feel like they can come and have a good time. We are really looking forward to a great weekend and I think the new policies are working very well this fall.”

Dalton said the new changes in parking arrangement, fences, and tents are helping to get the fans away from segregation of students and alumni.

The Homecoming parade route will be the same one that has been used for the last two years, Webster said. It will begin at Lincoln Highway and Third Street and end at University Circle.

Webster said the route will proceed west down Lincoln Hwy. and turn north on Normal Road. The parade then will continue on Normal to turn west on Lucinda Ave. Finally, the procession will take its last turn south on University Circle.

The route will require parts of certain roads to be blocked off. Webster said University and DeKalb Police will be helping out with traffic direction and routes.

In addition to the regular visitor parking, certain temporary parking areas will be blocked off to accomodate the extra crowd, Williams said.