Downtown readies for tailgating

Published 8:00 am Friday, September 5, 2014

On game day, Downtown Troy is the place to be for unique spin on the tailgating experience.

This is the third year for the Downtown Tailgates, and activities begin Saturday before the Troy vs. Duke home game.

“Anyone and everyone is more than welcome to come down to tailgate,” organizer Leigh Anne Windham said. “Downtown is one of our best assets as a city. I am excited for Downtown Troy to be a part of the home game day experience.”

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The tailgate is Saturday from noon to 3 p.m. on the Square. Area merchants will provide game day specials and sales. Visitors and Troy fans are invited to bring food and enjoy the downtown experience before going to the university for more tailgating events there. There will be door prizes for attendees.

“There will be tables, people can sit down and enjoy the event,” Tourism Director Shelia Jackson said. “It’s a great time for everyone to come visit beautiful downtown before the opening home game.”

The band Casual, which will be performing at the gazebo on the Square, will provide live music. Jackson said members specialize in jazz and Top 40. They will be performing for the duration of the event.

Fans can also watch big games on a large flat-screen TV that will be set up for the event. Jackson said is larger and nicer than the TV used in prior years.

Windham said Troy and Duke fans alike are welcome to the event, and are encouraged to use the university’s free shuttle bus service.

The shuttle service stops at area hotels, the university, and downtown at 30-minute intervals on game day. There is free parking provided downtown.

“Tailgaters can hang out with us downtown, then hop on the shuttle service and go to the university for their tailgating events and the game, then take the shuttle back downtown after the game,” Windham said. “It’s a fun and different thing to do before you head over for university tailgating.”