What began as a free downtown concert series now includes the Crimson Tide.
On Saturday, the city of Tuscaloosa is hosting “Live at the Plaza — Football Watch Party” for the University of Alabama football team's away game against South Carolina.
Like the free summer concerts, the watch party will be at Government Plaza, 2106 Sixth St., and is free to attend.
The festivities begin at 1 p.m. for the game that kicks off at 2:30 p.m. on a massive 16-foot-by-9-foot LED screen for fans.
City officials said the typical Live at the Plaza rules will apply and food trucks will be on site.
Entertainment district rule also will govern the purchase and consumption of alcohol.
Those attending will be allowed to bring blankets, chairs, food and non-alcoholic beverages, but tents, grills and alcoholic beverages brought in from outside the park are not allowed.
However, attendees will be allowed to purchase alcohol at participating downtown bars and restaurants and bring them onto Government Plaza for the game.
Entertainment District rules include:
• To take alcohol outside of a participating bar or restaurant, the alcoholic beverage must be in a clear disposable cup, no larger than 16 ounces, with an approved entertainment district sticker.
• Open alcoholic beverages must remain within the boundaries of the entertainment district.
• Open alcoholic beverages may not be taken into a vehicle or taken into another alcohol-licensed area, such as a bar or restaurant.
The Live at the Plaza concert series recently completed its fifth year of events.
Launched in 2015, the shows originally were limited to June. But after attracting nearly 600 people for the final 2015 show, the series expanded to include concerts in July.
During its initial years, attendees could bring their own alcoholic beverages to be consumed during the events. But before the 2017 series of concerts, then-Tuscaloosa Police Chief Steve Anderson urged the council to adopt an entertainment district in order to assist police officers in knowing when and where the open consumption of alcoholic beverages is allowed.
He also said it would prevent those who bring large amounts of booze to the event from wanting to finish it all before they leave.
Since then, the alcoholic beverage rules for each concert have been governed by an entertainment district, which relaxes the laws that regulate the public consumption of opened alcoholic beverages and allows patrons to take drinks outside of bars or restaurants within the zone, without penalty.
However, no alcohol from outside of the district can be brought in and all drinks must be purchased from a participating vendor and be contained in a designated entertainment district cup.
Reach Jason Morton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 205-722-0200.
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