Riot Gear Needed at Highlander Stadium

Don't let the relative calm of this moment fool you. The east end of Highlander Stadium is a madhouse. (Staff photo: Chris McGathey)
Don’t let the relative calm of this moment fool you. The east end of Highlander Stadium’s home stands is a madhouse. (Staff photo: Chris McGathey)

I’ll just warn you right now: I’m about to enter “get off my lawn” mode.

My wife, our two sons, and I went to Highland Park’s homecoming football game on Friday night. We bought general admission tickets. Given that my autistic son can’t handle loud noises, we sat in the east end of the stands, because the Highlander Band sits in the west end.

The Highlander Band might as well have been a rumor. Our section was filled with middle school and elementary school students, with hardly any parents in sight, and EVERY ONE OF THEM WAS TALKING during the national anthem. I couldn’t hear a note of it.

Once the game started, things got really crazy. Kids were pushing each other down the rows, in both directions. Other students were climbing — or being shoved — from one row to the next. I saw a kid get kicked in the head, just before I felt something hit my head. If Richard Bohac finds a way to keep these ragamuffins under control, then his reputation as a badass is even more well-deserved than I thought.

By the end of the first quarter, we’d had enough. The relatively empty visitors’ stands across the field looked like a respite, so we migrated over there. At first, the security guards wouldn’t let us in, because our tickets were for the home side. I appealed to the woman in the visitors’ box office. She asked me if I had intended to buy home tickets. “Yes,” I told her, “but sitting over there is like sitting in a mosh pit.”

Perhaps I was so put off because I know the rambunctious 5-year-old who lives in my home all too well, and those kids in the east end of the home stands looked like his future. Or maybe I’m just getting old. Either way, I’ll pay whatever it takes for a reserved seat for my next game at Highlander Stadium. See you next year.

8 thoughts on “Riot Gear Needed at Highlander Stadium

  • October 28, 2013 at 2:57 pm
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    Good luck finding those reserved seats. Unless someone left them to you in their will, they aren’t very likely. My kid refuses to go back to a game. Too loud, too rowdy and simply ridiculous. I watched the security folks with these kids. It’s impossible to corral them and they are extremely disrespectful.

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  • October 28, 2013 at 3:39 pm
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    We avoid the games because we don’t have reserved seats and the GA is an a$$whipping. it’s ironic that you refer to it as a mosh pit since the high school is now SUPER strict at the high school dances, not allowing mosh pits or the “jump up and down group dances” and anything else that resembles kids letting loose and having fun.

    What about that blond haired lady in the yellow jacket that always yells at kids to get off the rails. Where was she during all of this?

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  • October 28, 2013 at 4:41 pm
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    It really is embarrassing. As much as I love HS football, I don’t go to many games because of that. It’s been a problem in all the years I’ve been here, and they never fix it. And parents don’t seem to care either.
    Funny to hear everyone commenting on the Mesquite Band issue as if we are better than them, anyone who observes the situation in the stands would clearly call us hypocrites.

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  • October 28, 2013 at 5:51 pm
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    Here’s something I bet most Park Cities people don’t know: When you flush the kid-size urinal in the men’s room below the visiting stands, the water goes through the porcelain and onto the floor.

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  • October 29, 2013 at 1:43 am
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    That is unfortunate. I sit in the reserved section and even there some of the kids act the way you are describing. It is a problem. There is at least one email from coach Allen each season asking parents to not leave their kids unattended at the games. You know it is sent because it is a problem. What does the district pay for all the chaperones? They need to have the ability to toss the kids from the stadium if their parents are not there or escort them to their parent’s seats if they are.

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  • October 29, 2013 at 9:02 am
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    Hey Coach/ AD, hows that email working. Keep sending it, might make you feel like you’re doing something, but it’s not doing anything.
    The real problem is trying to corral ANY kids in a confined area for any amount of time. Where I grew up, they had a field surrounding the stands, where all of us played, talked, etc. Unfortunately, not an option at Highlander.

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  • October 29, 2013 at 11:16 am
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    I agree with really. The reserved seats are not any better. PUshing , shoving, running up and down the aisles constantly, talking/screaming (not about the football game). It’s a total beating. Kids need to be supervised! We have sold out the “endzone” to advertising banners.

    I’ve seen seniors almost dismantled by kids running in the reserved sections. Dan, we are with you.
    Vistors side sounds like a great idea.

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  • November 2, 2013 at 8:54 am
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    It’s 3 free hours of babysitting while i go to Mi Co and drink a Mambo Taxi or two or three.

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