The Santa Clara leg of the Taylor Swift Eras Tour was getting a lot of heat online from Swifties when they banned friendship bracelets, but that decision was reversed in less than 24 hours. Another Great War won for fans, however tailgating, or as fans affectionately call it “Taygating,” is still prohibited.
The outrage started on Thursday, a fan on Twitter inquired about Levi’s Stadium’s stance on the bracelets. “What about friendship bracelets?” asked the fan in a now-deleted Tweet. “Any rules on those?! I have over 200 to trade and give out.”
“Hello. Bracelets are not permitted in the stadium,” replied Levi’s Stadium, and the internet erupted.
Trading friendship bracelets at the Eras Tour is as essential as the music itself – it’s literally in one of her songs. Swifties spend weeks and weeks hand-making dozens and sometimes hundreds of these bracelets that they trade with other fans and even gift to event staff. Arms full of colorful beads have been the norm at every other tour stop. Some online speculated the bracelet ban may have been because some rowdy fans have thrown their bracelets at Taylor Swift during her concerts, however, no official reason was cited.
Whatever the reason, Levi’s Stadium backtracked Friday. “Friendship bracelets will be permitted at Taylor Swift | The Eras Tour concerts at Levi’s Stadium. We are enchanted to see you one week from today,” Levi’s Stadium tweeted. Fans got a bit of whiplash but were relieved.
Also announced on Thursday, Swiftie Clara broke another sacred Eras Tour tradition: no tailgating. In a statement from Levi’s Stadium, they said, “Tailgating is prohibited for the Taylor Swift concerts and there will be no designated viewing areas outside of Levi’s Stadium. Fans without event tickets will not be permitted to congregate in parking areas or on the streets. We will be working closely with [Santa Clara Police Department] to ensure orderly access for ticketed fans, emergency vehicles, and to provide a safe environment for fans and event staff.”
Customarily, Swifties who were unable to buy tickets to the concerts have decided to turn a negative into a positive and throw their own parties outside the venues where they can still hear the concert and congregate with fellow fans. These unofficial events attract big crowds since these concerts are highly coveted events. Taylor Swift hasn’t toured since 2018 and tickets are reselling for thousands of dollars, so this is the only way many fans can participate.
Fans are especially frustrated since tailgating is the norm for sports events being held at the very same stadium, but they won’t be stopped. Some Taygate events are still being organized and fans are mobilizing online to find alternative places to gather. At other tour stops that haven’t allowed tailgating — like Cincinnati, Kansas City, Chicago, etc. — fans still filled the streets outside the venues to dance and sing the night away.
Tasman Drive will be closed between Great America Parkway and Lick Mill Boulevard starting July 28 and reopening on July 30 and ticket-less Swifties aren’t supposed to gather there, but we’ll see.
The Santa Clara Police Department seems well aware of huge crowds that gather to Taygate. The SCPD’s Twitter account retweeted Levi’s Stadium’s tailgating announcement and added, “Hey fabulous Swifties, listen up! We’re sorry to burst your tailgating dreams like a ‘Love Story’ plot twist, but we gotta follow the rules, y’all! Swiftie fans without event tickets, let’s not ‘Shake It Off’ and try to gather on the streets. We know it’s tough to resist the ‘All Too Well’ temptation of tailgating, but let’s keep our ‘Eyes Open’ and respect the guidelines!”
Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour is coming to town July 28 and 29 and Swift has been proclaimed Honorary Mayor and the city was renamed “Swiftie Clara.” Many fans will be flowing into Santa Clara whether they have tickets or not. Many are desperate to grab last-minute tickets up until the openers are finishing up their set so it’s sure to be a hectic time for the City of Santa Clara and hopefully concertgoers alike.