Monday, August 19, 2013

NFL's Enhanced Public Safety Policy?

The last NFL game I attended was back in 1992. Maybe 1993. We moved to Ohio in 1991, so it’s hard to remember exactly when, but we hadn’t been living here long, that much I do remember. We went down to Cincinnati to watch the Bengals play.

Now, we’d been to Riverfront Stadium for several Reds games, but those games had elderly-type ushers, not armed security guards. It kind of spooked us in to going again.

Still, we’ve always wanted to attend a game at Heinz Field to watch the Steelers play and when the opportunity arose, we jumped all over it (Happy Father’s Day to my hubby). So, was I surprised at the e-mail I received in the mail last month (in preparation to attending this Saturday’s game)? Not really. This is what it said:

The NFL’s enhanced public safety policy affects the type and size of bags that are permitted into the stadium – not the items that you normally need to bring to a game.

Every fan may use the following specified bags to carry items into the stadium:

  • One bag that is clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and does not exceed 12” x 6” x 12” OR
  • A one-gallon clear plastic freezer bag (Ziploc bag or similar) AND
  • In addition to one of the clear bags noted above, fans may also carry in a small clutch bag or purse approximately the size of a hand, with or without a handle or strap

Please note: An exception will be made for medically necessary items after proper inspection.

To find the NFL’s policy please visit and refer to your team’s specific stadium policy for complete safety information.

I feel like I’m going back to work at Stern’s (a now defunct department store I worked at for a short period of time while we were stationed at Ft. Monmouth, NJ (1980s)--which I though was located in the Neptune Mall, but I can’t find the mall on a map, so it’s possible it went bye-bye. Talk about a blast from the past reminder!). I couldn’t take a purse inside the store, not unless it was clear plastic. Nice to feel like a criminal before I’d done any kind of crime!

Anyway…I find it sad that the NFL has to have these policies (not to mention those armed security guards). That people can’t just go to the games to have a good time. You’d think with the price of the tickets, they wouldn’t need to worry about this kind of crap.

I have a feeling this may be the LAST NFL game we attend. I’d much rather go to baseball and hockey games. At least there I don’t feel like a criminal (or in fear for my life!).

Have you ever checked out a map of a place you used to live at? I like to see how much I remember or how much has changed. Or are you one of those strange people I’ve met who have never lived anywhere but one city? If so, what is that like?





JeffO said...

The school my kids go to implemented a 'clear water bottles only' policy a couple of years ago. Then there were rumors that they wanted to require all backpacks/bookbags to be of the clear vinyl variety; fortunately, that one didn't go through.

I sometimes wonder if policies like the one you mentioned are aimed at keeping fans/players safe, or keeping profits from concession stands safe.

B.E. Sanderson said...

Ah, the world we live in. I guess I won't be going to any NFL games. I don't go anywhere I can't take my purse, and my purse is nowhere near the size of anyone's hand (unless he's a clown or Mickey Mouse).

I found out Google Maps will let me walk down the street where I grew up. The old house doesn't look the same anymore, but I can still see the tree my sister and I planted.

Stacy McKitrick said...

Jeff - Do they even MAKE clear vinyl backpacks? I can see how that issue failed. As for the stadium, I'm guessing profits! But even some camera bags are bigger than that, so does that mean photographers aren't allowed to bring in their gear?

B.E. - Never thought of Google Maps. I'll have to check out my childhood neighborhood and see how many homes have bars on the windows now.

James Garcia Jr. said...

Steelers, huh? My brother is a big Pittsburgh fan. Are they go to be any good this year? God knows about my Cowboys. We have a stadium that can be seen from space, but a trophy room that can be rented out since there's hardly anything in it... *slaps head* Ok, I guess there's five in there, but nothing new! And who knows when there will be a sixth?!? My Chicago Cubs are not much better. *sigh* Can I pick a winning team or what? ;)


Stacy McKitrick said...

Jimmy - I don't know if the Steelers will be good. I hope they are, but their division will be tough. The Bengals are looking real good this year and even the Browns don't seem to stink as bad - haha!

So how does a California guy like all those out of state teams? When I grew up in So. Cal, I was a Ram and Dodger fan. I'm still am!

Jennette Marie Powell said...

I've been checking out my college twon, as my daughter's about to move there. Strange to see how much has changed - and how much hasn't! I haven't been to an NFL game since the early 90s either. No normal-sized purses? Yuck! Agree with the commenter who says it's more about concession stand profits. NASCAR still lets people bring coolers in!

Samantha MacDouglas said...


My father was in the Air Force. We moved a lot, as you might guess. Every so often, we'd take a road trip and pass through the places we'd lived. It was always amazing how some things had really changed and how others were very much the same.

Stacy McKitrick said...

Jennette - It's amazing how you don't notice the changes while you're living somewhere, you have to leave! It's always strange to visit my parents. It's like I know the area, but then I don't.

Samantha - Yeah, I joined the Army and married a career soldier, so we did our fair share of moving, too. When we took our son back to our place in NJ, he said he was surprised at how small it was. Yeah, I guess it would seem pretty large to a five-year-old!

Anne Gallagher said...

The last time we went "home" for vacation we took a ride all over the place. I couldn't believe how much everything had changed.

As for large events, I never take anything I can't fit in my pockets. Money, license and insurance card usually. I don't like carrying a purse, afraid of pickpockets, or losing something important.

Stacy McKitrick said...

Anne - For local games, I don't normally have a problem with it. But when it's cold, I usually like to bring extra gear, or carry my blanket in a bag. I guess I should be glad we're going to a game in August and not November!