BYU Wins Holy War

BYU Wins Holy War
George, like Collie and Harline before him, is now still open!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Sports Etiquette: Be a Good Fan Around Kids

What is your obligation as a fan to kids sitting next to you...

Whether you bring them yourself or you're just sitting next to them, kids come to sporting events. It is a great thing, for the most part, to sit next to young kids at a sporting event. Usually, there is a little more work (putting up with a more movement in the seats, more cheering, and entering/leaving of the seat) you have to put forth while watching the game. Yet, seeing the happiness in victory or the disappointment of defeat in the attitudes of these young fans really makes it fun. Lately though the family friendliness of sporting events have taken hits. Too much beer being sold, and crude language has taken a toll on the behavior of fans. Seeing grown men climb over the top of kids to get a free T-shirt or fuzzy basketball is also disheartening. The majority of us have memories of going to sporting events growing up, and of having good/bad experiences with the older fans sitting around us. It is important, and should be the responsibility as a fan, that when you are sitting next to a young fan of your team at a game to make their experiences great. Here are some suggestion for making this happen:

1) Language! Language! Language! It is annoying to sit next to a foul mouth fan in general, but when you are sitting next to one and a young fan that goes over a line. Man up and tell the person to keep that type of language to themselves. The person that brought the younger fan to the game is usually looking for this back up to get those fans to shut up with the foul language.

2) Talk to younger fans. This is a little tricky. You have to play most situations by ear, but for the most part the younger fan is looking to feel included. Asking some simple questions, giving a high five, or explaining a question that they may have makes their experiences much better. You DON'T want to step on the toes of the person bringing the kid to the game. Also you don't want to hound the kid if they don't want to talk. Be smart, but do go out of you way to bring them into the game.

3) If you get a give away item (T-shirt, ball, Frisbee, etc...) give it to the kids. What are you going to do with a crappy little give away item after the game? Something like that makes the kid extremely happy, and will keep them following the team. Don't, under any circumstances, run over a kid to get to any prize, no matter what that prize is. There is no bigger jerk in all of sports than the drunk guy slamming a kid to a the ground to get a little stuffed item, with a corporate logo, thrown into the crowd.

4) Be patient! If the kids are standing and can join in. Don't be the sit down guy. Who likes the sit down guy? Why do the sit down guys come to the games to begin with? Friends don't let friends be the 'sit down' guy!

Remember that the building of a fan base is always important. It is fun to talk sports with fans that actually know what they are talking about. This all start with getting the fans when they are young. You remember that fan you were sitting next to at a sporting event that made it fun, be that fan for the next generation!

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