ATHENS — Top donors will be able to buy a cold one at Sanford Stadium this fall. But they’re going to have to go to considerable trouble to do so, and not everybody’s thrilled about it.
The Georgia Bulldog Club on Friday sent out an email club to donors explaining the details and restrictions about who qualifies for admittance into its new club-level beer garden. DawgNation was first to report this week that beer and wine would be available to Magill Society donors this year.
As it turns out, it will be only a certain level of donor who will have access to the cordoned-off, alcohol-serving area on the 200 — or club level — of the stadium. Only individuals who have donated at least $100,000 to UGA Athletic Association will be permitted in the area. In addition, those individuals most pay a $250 fee apiece no more than two season passes for access. Individuals who have pledged $250,000 or more will be guaranteed access
Food and non-alcoholic drinks will be provided, but members must pay for the by-the-glass beer and wine. The area will open two hours before kickoff. Space will be limited to 400 people.
“I’m not going to do it,” said one Magill member who would qualify for access. “It’s just not appealing to me. I prefer tailgating in my normal spot and I’m not interested in drinking during the game. I’m sure some people are and that’s fine. But to me it just feels like another way to raise money.”
Said another Magill member, who does not qualify for admittance: “I think they are out of touch with their fan base, and I doubt this will be that successful. Many of the $100,000 contributors have access to suites. In a suite, you can drink your own alcohol and see the game. I think this will not go over very well.”
Georgia started the Magill Society in 2015 as a way to raise money for the new indoor practice facility for football. It requires a pledge of $25,000 to be paid in full within five years at a minimum of $5,000 per years. That membership has grown to 1,054 individuals who have contributed $108.9 million, according to Matt Borman, Georgia’s director of development. All that money is earmarked for construction projects for football and other sports.
The SEC on Friday approved alcohol sales in general-seating areas at its annual spring meeting in Destin. But UGA President Jere Morehead and Athletic Director Greg McGarity indicated the school won’t be adopting that policy anytime soon.
“I think we’ve got it right at UGA,” Morehead told DawgNation’s Mike Griffith in Destin. “I don’t see us making any significant changes.”
Morehead did say Georgia is open “to review” its policy following Friday’s league vote.