AMES, Iowa — There’s no doubt that game day will feel no where close to normal on Saturday in Ames. Usually parking lots are filled with tailgaters as far as the eyes can see, but instead most will be watching the season opener from home.
“I’ve been an officer for 20 years and I honestly don’t remember a time where we haven’t had fans at a football game. So it’s going to be at first for our department and we’re not exactly sure what the weekend will look like,” Ames police commander Jason Tuttle said.
For Iowa State football’s season opener at home against Louisiana, no fans are allowed to be inside Jack Trice Stadium, not even in the parking lots to tailgate.
The Ames police department said they usually have about 20 officers helping Iowa State University police on game day with stadium and tailgate policing but now, that’s simply not needed.
Commander Tuttle said they will still have a few more officers out than a typical Saturday, but mostly they will be on the streets making sure people are watching the game safely. He encourages small back yard barbecues with social distancing, but says they will be on the lookout for oversized crowds especially in the college part of town.
“It’s great if people get them backyard go out, have a good time together, but we have had some complaints over the last week of larger parties where people are not social distancing, and they’re not wearing masks,” Commander Tuttle said. “So we’ll continue to monitor those gatherings to make sure that they they comply with our local ordinances.”
Ames is one of the six counties in the state who currently have their bars closed. The game is at 11 a.m. Saturday.