Problems with the flow of spectators in and out of the Bryce Jordan Center have been THON’s most visible points of criticism in recent years. Last year, the issue reached its worst point ever, as the flawed system left lines of people left waiting outside for hours in frigid weather.
To prevent this problem from recurring this year, THON implemented a new wristband system that relies on electronic tracking to communicate whether spectators are allowed to enter the BJC or wait in a designated, indoor area until space becomes available.
Under the new system, each and every person entering the BJC is required to have a wristband, including captains and committee members. Spectators must go to Will Call prior to entrance and then have their wristband scanned at Gate A, and the wristbands are also scanned upon departure to check visitors out of the system.
Much to the credit of this year’s Executive Committee, the system has worked according to plan since the doors opened early this afternoon. In the words of Rules and Regulation committee member Caitlin Relich, “things are going pretty well.” Relich went on to mention that despite the success of the new system, some spectators have complained about the policy’s requirement that a new wristband must be issued for each entrance to the BJC throughout the weekend.
At Gate A, where all spectators must enter and have their wristbands scanned, there was a constant flow of people entering and exiting throughout the day without any noticeable stoppage. However, committee members working at Gate A admitted they have run into the issue of missing people who speedily walk in, whose entries are later considered “invalid” when they check out.
As for wait time? Almost none. Those we asked said they only waited about 10-15 minutes on average to enter #THON14. Considering past events, the new entrance system is a win-win situation for everyone involved in THON weekend — it’s certainly a huge improvement on behalf of Rules and Regulations, and it also makes things much easier on spectators.