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K-State Today

August 25, 2020

Preparations and procedures for an unprecedented football season

Submitted by Gene Taylor

Dear K-Staters and Manhattan Residents:

The last six months have been some of the most challenging in recent memory, and I know that each and every one of us is looking forward to getting back to a degree of normalcy in our lives. I would like to take a moment to thank our university and community leaders for all they have done to keep Manhattan, Riley County and our campus as safe as possible. Many countless hours, days and months have gone into putting together plans and processes that are in the best interest of our students and residents. And we have done the same here at K-State Athletics.

We are just weeks away from our first home football game of the season, and I want to take a few moments to assure our community that we are exhausting all of our resources and energy to make Bill Snyder Family Stadium a safe environment for everyone. Utilizing a comprehensive plan recommended by our medical personnel and Big 12 leadership, our student-athletes and coaches have worked extremely hard to put themselves in a position to play this season, and I know they are excited to do so.

Our players and staff are being regularly tested for COVID-19, masks are being worn at all times in our buildings while all meetings and team activities are being conducted in a socially distant manner. They have made the commitment to be safe, and we want to do everything we can to provide them the opportunity to compete.

From a stadium and fan perspective, that same commitment is evident as we have implemented several new policies to make Bill Snyder Family Stadium safe. These include:

We worked closely with the Riley County Commission and gained approval to open Bill Snyder Family Stadium to approximately 25% capacity this season to maintain social distancing requirements.  

Face coverings
In accordance with city of Manhattan ordinance and Kansas State University policy, fans must wear face coverings over their mouths and noses in order to enter Bill Snyder Family Stadium and continue wearing them inside the stadium. Fans should provide their own face coverings; K-State will not provide face coverings.

No tailgating
Tailgating will be prohibited in parking lots controlled by K-State Athletics and satellite lots operated by Kansas State University groups in order to reduce the risk of large gatherings. Parking lots will open in conjunction with stadium gates two hours before kickoff and fans will be encouraged to immediately enter the stadium once parked. Fans cannot bring or set up any items normally associated with a tailgate. Typical tailgate items such as lawn chairs, coolers, grills, tent canopies, tables, etc. are prohibited. Further, fans may not congregate at their vehicles to eat, drink or socialize while waiting to enter the game. Fans are encouraged to park, gather their game gear and finish drinks as they walk directly to the stadium to enter.

No re-entry
To assure the safest environment possible, once inside Bill Snyder Family Stadium fans will not be permitted to re-enter the stadium should they elect to exit. This will help eliminate unnecessary congestion at gates, particularly prior to and after halftime.

Other safety measures
Hand sanitizing stations will be located throughout the stadium, as well as signage to encourage social distancing. Also, stadium employees will be required to wear protective gear and face coverings and will work diligently to keep people from congregating in the concourse areas.

We are taking these safety measures very seriously and will have the appropriate stadium staff, security and game day personnel in place to ensure our stadium policies will be followed.

Again, these are unprecedented times and we want our fans to feel comfortable and safe when inside the stadium. Our fans play such a tremendous role in making our game day environment one of the best in the Big 12, and we all hope that a return to a more normal routine is just around the corner. And for fans unable to attend any games this season, please stay safe and follow our community safety guidelines during any gatherings to watch and support K-State Football this season.

Go 'Cats,

Gene Taylor
Director of Athletics