To the Editor:

I believe intelligent rules can be enforced to properly police an area and to control dangerous and bad behavior without penalizing all fans.

My wife and I have not missed a Yale football season in 55 years. For the past 30 years, I have been one of the leaders of the 61-year-old New Haven Gridiron Club, which was founded to support Yale football. My motor home’s place in Field F has been a landmark and a gathering place for members and friends and parents of Yale players. We have made so many wonderful friends from this relationship and have celebrated the victories and shared in the process of healing from defeat; Yale Athletics director Tom Beckett has been a wonderful host and has extended many privileges to our members and myself.

The Class of 1954’s generous financing of Bowl restoration is succeeding in making the bowl attractive and fan-friendly again. Increasing fan support has been a priority up until now, but I think the committee [that decided to curtail tailgating] has gone astray and does not realize how many loyal fans it will hurt.

We will continue to support the players and parents from the trunk of our car, but I’m sorry to hear the party is over at halftime. I hope the committee will reconsider and modify their blanket shutdown of a really enjoyable day at the Bowl.

I am sure I speak for many fans who support the team and may now stay away.

Donald R. Nielsen

Nov. 5, 2005

The writer is the executive director of the New Haven Gridiron Club.