For all of you that don't have the pleasure of being able to go to TCF Bank, and enjoy a nice cold one while watching the Gopher beat New Hampshire 44-7, I thought I'd share my experience with you. My seatmate Galen and I left after the 1st quarter to check out the beer/wine lines, see how smoothly the process went, and took some picture to share.
This is what the line looked like:
It took us under 10 minutes to get our drinks and finish the transaction. Quite honestly, I was pleasantly surprised how smoothly the process was on the 1st game they offered beer, and thought the drinks were priced very competitively for a stadium or ballpark; it's not higher than anything I'd seen in other venues.
Here are a few issues we noticed. We ordered 3 drinks together. You are allowed 2 drinks per person, and since we were both there, thought it wouldn't be an issue. However, the concession stand woman said she'd have to do 2 different transactions because she could only do 2 per transaction. That seemed like not a huge time saver. I could see if one of us had asked for over our 2 drink allotment, but that didn't seem right.
On top of that, they had run out of change by the beginning of the 2nd quarter. There was no change, at all. That really surprised me, as it wasn't even that late into the game. The only other complaint was the lack of televisions outside by the beer tents. We went to the non-plaza section by Gate A, and there were no tv’s out there. If they did have them, I don’t think the fans would mind lines as long as they could see the games.
These are nitpicky things, and things that I’m sure will be worked out by the next game.
I'd say the 1st day of beer sales at TCF Bank was a success. The University of Minnesota reported that they received $111,119. Exact numbers are currently not available because premium/suite alcoholic beverages can differ in price, and sales numbers will need to be audited over the coming weeks to ensure accuracy (per the U of MN). Approximately 15,327 servings of beer and wine were sold at the stadium, including an estimated 11,118 servings in the general seating area and 2,209 in premium/suite areas.
For those of you wondering if beer sales caused any issues at TCF Bank, you will be happy to know that there were zero arrests, they haven’t ever had that. There were only 2 people kicked out of the stadium, and it was reported that they had the least amount of issues the U has had since the stadium opened.
I think if they can make the transactions quicker, get proper change, and let people buy as many as they have people for the transaction (to cut down on number of transactions), they will be able to grow that number by at least 20%. More money for the U and more beer for the fans is always a good thing!
Twitter: @NadineBabu www.twitter.com/nadinebabu
Nadine Babu is the CEO and Social Media Strategist at Babu Social Networks and completed her undergraduate degree and MBA at the Carlson School of Management. She manages and writes for GopherHole.com