LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- University of Louisville Athletics Director Vince Tyra addressed complaints from fans about their experience at Saturday's game against Eastern Kentucky in an email to season ticket holders Tuesday morning.

Tyra said 250 contracted employees focused on food and beverage service. But on a normal gameday, 400 employees are working on these services. He said the labor shortage, combined with glitches in the cashless payment system, led to long lines at the concession stands and at the gates.

"We fumbled with the operational aspects of the gameday fan experience," Tyra told reporters during a virtual news conference Tuesday. "But we're going to improve, and the evidence will be recognizable on Friday night." 

Tyra announced several steps to help reduce wait times and lines at the concession stands:  

  • Activate 25 in-seat vendors who will accept cash.
  • Accept cash at select concession stands on the concourse and those stands will be clearly identified.
  • Anticipate a 40% increase in point-of-sale locations over Saturday.
  • Transition four (4) concessions stands to beverage-only (serving water, soda, and beer) within the concourses and they will be labeled accordingly.
  • Centerplate’s IT department is actively working with point-of-sale payment partners to determine root cause of credit card processing delays on Saturday and provide resolution.
  • Centerplate and UofL's IT department are conducting a networking overview in effort to improve speed of service and throughput. 
  • Activate all concourse water fountains to be open and operational. Free cups will be available for fans at concession points.

To help people get through gates for entry into Cardinal Stadium, they will have: 

  • Additional staff and supervisors provided for training on scanners
  • Additional supervision will be provided at each gate for trouble shooting and guest services

He also reminded fans to download mobile tickets before heading to the stadium to help get people in faster. If you have any questions on how to download your tickets, you are asked to call or text 502-852-5151 for help.

As a result of all of the feedback about Saturday's game, all beer, fountain drinks and water prices will be 50% off from the time gates open until halftime.

"We've addressed the issues, and they should see material changes and improvements on Friday night," Tyra said.

Friday's game against Central Florida will kick off at 7:30 p.m. Gates will open up to fans at 6 p.m.

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