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MSU to begin serving alcohol at sporting events starting this fall


Fans of Michigan State University sports will be able to purchase alcoholic beverages during some athletic events on campus this fall.

MSU had been one of a handful of Big 10 schools that had not allowed alcohol purchases at sporting events. But recent legislation signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer created an opening for public universities to begin selling alcoholic beverages at some spaces on campus, including during football and basketball games.

The Board of Trustees voted unanimously Wednesday to have administrators apply for liquor licenses for Spartan Stadium, the Breslin Center and other campus facilities.

MSU Athletic Director Alan Haller says he’s seen other schools serve alcohol safely at their sporting events.

"I really want our fans to be able to have those same amenities at our stadiums that they have when they travel to support our team at visiting stadiums,” Haller said.

The school hopes to begin sales at the September 16 football game against the University of Washington.

That’s two weeks after the first home game, meaning alcohol will not be sold for the Sept. 1 or Sept. 9 home games at the stadium.

Trustee Dennis Denno said he expects the change will help reduce binge drinking on game days. He added the school wanted to take its time and make sure staff are prepared to serve alcohol safely.

"We wanted to wait for the third home game just to make sure we got it right and we got it safe, and it was a great experience for those who want to have a beer and those who don’t," Denno said.

Officials estimate beverage sales will generate about $250,000 per game. Revenue from the sales will go towards athletics, student life and efforts to support education around safe alcohol consumption.

Arjun Thakkar is WKAR's politics and civics reporter.
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