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The End of BYOB at Busch Stadium?

Categories: Sports
Beer cheers.jpg
Approaching the stadium turnstiles, it's time to put 'em down.
Tuesday turned out to be a spectacular night for a baseball. It rained all morning, but when the sun emerged early in the afternoon and the temperature rose to a balmy 70 degrees, there was no way I was going to turn down a co-worker's offer for a pair free tickets to the Cardinals versus the Braves, especially with Chris Carpenter on the hill.

My girlfriend and I hopped on a bar shuttle from Soulard to the stadium. We bought two Schlafly Kölsch drafts in plastic cups from the bar, planning to drink them at our seats with the light dinner we packed. Alas, the plan didn't work out so well.

We brought beer in plastic cups into the stadium earlier this year for a game against the Mets and it was standard operating procedure all of last season to buy a refill from the shuttle driver on the ride down and take a full cup into the game. This time, however, as we approached the bag-check line at the right field entrance a young stadium employee wearing one of those radio earpieces politely informed us that alcohol can no longer be brought inside Busch.

What gives?

"I guess they were selling beers at Paddy O's for $5," he explained. "A lot people were leaving the stadium to get them and coming back inside."

Another couple that hitched a ride in the same van as us said that gates along Clark Ave still allow beer in cups through the turnstiles. We asked and the stadium worker said and he didn't know anything about that. With the first pitch just minutes away, we finished off our drinks on the sidewalk and hustled to our seats.

A quick search on the Cardinals' website shows that the outside alcohol policy is clearly spelled out -- bring in almost all the outside food and drink you like but leave the booze at home:
Inspection Policy.jpg
Apparently they used to let the cups slide (sort of like the police give a free pass on open containers on the sidewalk outside the stadium) but had to crack down when it started costing them money. It's not surprising, but definitely disheartening, especially when it came time to fork over sixteen bucks for two plastic bottles of Bud Select.

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