Tailgating Causes Trouble at Reliant Park

The game-day tradition of tailgating by fans without tickets is a problem for the Houston Texans.

On the one hand, you have your paying customers, to whom you owe - well, everything. On the other is the public at large, made up of people who don't pay your bills. To whom do you owe your allegiance? The answer is not so cut and dried in professional sports, which is what makes the Houston Texans' decision to curtail the activities of Reliant Park tailgaters so perplexing.

Since Houston's return to the NFL nine years ago, the Texans have been the indirect beneficiary of a vigorous game-day tradition of tailgating in the parking lots by ticket holders as well as fans without tickets. The atmosphere around the stadium adds to the fan experience and keeps others - future ticket-holders, quite possibly - involved on Sundays.

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