Magic City Classic 2016: Birmingham PD readies for hectic weekend at Legion Field
Thousands will swarm Birmingham this weekend for the 75th annual Magic City Classic at Legion Field.
For historically black colleges and universities in the state, it doesn't get any bigger than Alabama A&M vs Alabama State at the 'Old Grey Lady on Graymont.' And with a big rivalry game comes huge crowds and the potential for conflict amongst all those in attendance at the various events throughout the weekend.
The annual event means all hands on deck for the Birmingham Police Department, which plans to make its presence well known from start to finish. With a large collection of surveillance equipment and help from various local law enforcement agencies, police are confident this year will be another safe and successful weekend.
"We are excited about having extra surveillance around the stadium and looking forward to using all of this equipment out there," Birmingham Police Lt. Sean Edwards said. "We have officers who have several hundred years of experience. We have officers who have been here 20 plus years. We've done it many years. I have been here 23 years."
Police say the key to safety and security in and around Legion Field is knowing who is coming and going from the surrounding neighborhoods. Authorities are encouraging all the residents in the area to get an "R" pass from the stadium that helps police easily identify the residents and monitor the flow of people during the flurry of activities ahead, during and after the game.
"When you have an event as large as this, when you're talking somewhere close to over 200,000 people inside the stadium, outside the stadium, so you have alot of moving parts," Edwards said. "So, it's always great and refreshing to have local law enforcement to come in and partner with us."
Magic City Classic Schedule of Events:
The Classic Pep Rally brought to you by The Natural Hair & Health Expo - Sheraton Birmingham Ballroom
McDonald's Magic City Classic Parade Featuring Ludacris and Yung Joc - Downtown Birmingham
Shuttles begin (only Crossplex begins at 9)- Perimeter will close
*Parking is free and shuttle rides are $5 per person. 12 & under are free.
10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Tailgate Party and Sponsor Village - Legion Field (West Side)
10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Ford Tailgate Takeover - Legion Field (East Side)
Yung Joc Performance & Live Music from Fresh The DJ & DJ Trouble - Legion Field (McDonald's Sound Stage in the Coors Light Tailgate Area)
75th Annual McDonald's Magic City Classic broadcast live on ESPN3- Legion Field
2016 Celebrity Ambassador - Grammy Award Winner Ludacris
Performance By: Alabama A&M Marching Maroon and White Band and ASU Mighty Marching Hornets
After the Game
Post-Game Concert Featuring Ludacris - Legion Field (North End Zone)