By Diane Gasper-O’Brien
University Relations and Marketing
HAYS, Kan. — It’s been a long time since the Fort Hays State University football team has qualified for the post-season, and fans are making plans to follow the Tigers in their first post-season action since 1995.
The Alumni Association is sponsoring a tailgate party before the Dec. 5 Mineral Water Bowl in Excelsior Springs, Mo., where the Tigers should feel welcome. The stadium that is home to the Excelsior Springs High School Tigers bears the same name of the FHSU mascot. The tailgate party for FHSU Tiger fans will take place in the parking lot on the west side of Tiger Stadium. Several FHSU students also will be in attendance at that event after boarding buses on campus en route to Missouri the morning of the game.
The Tigers, 8-3, were invited to participate in the bowl game as the highest finishing Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association team that didn’t qualify for the NCAA Division II playoffs. The noon game will pit Fort Hays State vs. the University of Minnesota-Duluth (also 8-3) from the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference.
FHSU already has tied the school record for most victories in a season, and plans are under way for fans to watch the Tigers try to break that record.
There are additional participation opportunities for two special groups of fans.
From the Alumni Association:
Tickets for the 10 a.m. tailgate party, which includes a chicken-dinner meal, are $6 for adults and $4 for children 10 and under. A combo package of the tailgate meal and the game is available for $16 for adults and $14 for children 10 and under. Game tickets only are $10.
A $1 processing fee is added to all game tickets purchased through the Alumni Association. Tickets will be available for pick-up at the tailgate registration table. Online registration for all these events is available at http://ow.ly/UZLgL (case sensitive).
There will also be an informal alumni and friends gathering in Excelsior Springs the night before the game, from 7 to 9 p.m.Dec. 4 at the Broadway Bar & Grill, 259 E. Broadway St. The bar and grill will serve as “Tiger headquarters” for those interested in socializing following the banquet. More information about the game and Friday’s banquet can be found atwww.fhsu.edu/bowlbound.
From Residential Life:
The FHSU Residence Hall Association and FHSU Residential Life are sending a busload of students to Excelsior Springs. The bus will leave at 5:30 a.m. the day of the game from McMindes Hall and plans to return to Hays at approximately 8 p.m.
Students are required to purchase their own game tickets from the FHSU athletic office by calling 785-628-4050. The tailgate meal is free to students riding the bus. They can sign up to ride the bus at www.signupgenius.com/go/