EAST LANSING, Mich. - The City of East Lansing, Ingham County Health Department (ICHD) and Michigan State University (MSU) are banding together once more to urge the greater East Lansing community to continue safety measures as Big Ten football returns to Spartan Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 24. The three partners have been working hand-in-hand since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We must all do our part to prevent transmission of this virus,” said MSU President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D. “MSU remains committed to working with our partners across Grand River and within our community to limit the spread of COVID-19. Together, we are urging Spartans near and far to cheer safely and follow all public health guidelines on game day and every day.”
From education to enforcement, the City of East Lansing, ICHD and MSU are united in using every tool in their toolbox to protect the health and safety of the Spartan community on game day. Existing tools include:
• A prohibition on tailgating on campus, including barring the possession of open or uncapped containers of alcoholic beverages and the consumption of alcoholic beverages in all public areas of land governed by the MSU Board of Trustees.
• A City ordinance that prohibits open alcohol in public places in the off-campus community, including streets, sidewalks, parking lots/garages, parks and more.
• Not allowing public distribution of tickets for home football games at Spartan Stadium.
• ICHD Emergency Orders that prohibit outdoor gatherings of more than 25 people in parts of East Lansing and limit indoor gatherings to no more than 10 people throughout the community.
• A requirement that face coverings be worn at all times, indoors and outdoors, on MSU’s campus and in downtown East Lansing.
• A City of East Lansing emergency ordinance that imposes fines of $500 for violating public health orders, including the size limits for social gatherings.
• A new COVID-19 exposure notification app, MI COVID Alert, that MSU students, faculty and staff as well as members of the local community are encouraged to download.
Leaders at MSU, Ingham County and the City of East Lansing are strongly discouraging off-campus gatherings as well to protect public health.
“We are urging Spartan fans to avoid large social gatherings in the off-campus community,” said East Lansing Mayor Aaron Stephens. “It’s also important for Spartan fans to know that officers with the East Lansing Police Department will be actively enforcing the City’s new emergency ordinance as well as all other noise and party-related ordinances on game day weekends. Let’s all do our part to cheer on the Spartans safely, so that we can keep our community safe and hopefully get back to a traditional football season next fall.”
“Certainly, there are financial penalties for violations of ordinances and orders, but the real cost is when COVID-19 spreads to vulnerable community members,” said Ingham County Health Officer Linda S. Vail. “Rarely do cases stay in limited geographic boundaries or spread only among one population demographic. Please take precautions on game day.”