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Fans encouraged to ride shuttles, buses to Ole Miss vs. Vanderbilt game Saturday

With hordes of visitors expected to be in town this weekend as Ole Miss takes on Vanderbilt, people are encouraged to use the shuttles and buses around town to get to campus to watch the game.

Oxford-University Transit will have two buses running every 15 minutes starting at 6 a.m. Saturday morning. The buses will pick up from the Jackson Avenue Center near the Old Oxford Mall and stop about two hours after the game. The University funds the game-day shuttle service.

The OUT shuttles are free of charge; however, transit officials ask everyone to visit the OUT website, www.oxfordms.net/visitors/gameday-shuttle-service.html, to read the rules of what items are allowed or not allowed to be carried onto the buses, including backpacks, track bags, tents, pets and large coolers over 40 quarts.

Backpacks and track bags will also not be allowed inside the Vaught-Hemingway Stadium as part of the new clear bag policy being implemented by Ole Miss.

Under the policy, the following bags are permitted inside the stadium:

* Bags that are clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and do not exceed 12-inches by 6-inches by 12-inches

* One-gallon clear plastic freezer bags (Ziploc bag or similar)

* Small clutch bags, with or without a handle or strap, that do not exceed 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches (approximately the size of a hand).

* An exception will be made for medically necessary items after proper inspection at a gate designated for this purpose.

Prohibited bags include, but are not limited to: purses larger than a clutch bag; briefcases; backpacks, cinch bags, and fanny packs that are not clear and/or exceed the size restriction; luggage of any kind; computer bags/cases; camera bags/cases; binocular bags/cases or any bag larger than the permissible size.

Gameday visitors to campus who have a permit to park on campus will be permitted to enter campus from any campus entrance except those on Gertrude-Ford Boulevard. Permit holders must park only in the lot type that matches their permit designation.

The city of Oxford contracted with Cline Tours to provide another shuttle option to and from the game. Riders can park at Oxford High School or FNC Park. The price to park is $20 for one vehicle with eight or fewer passengers; $40 per vehicle with more than nine passengers and $300 for buses.

“Parking at Oxford High School filled up fast previous game day, however, FNC Park continued to have plenty of available parking throughout the day,” said OPD Chief Joey East.

Police advise to place valuables in the trunk and to lock vehicles.

The Double Decker buses will run from the Square to campus and back before the game at no charge starting at 10 a.m. and for two hours after the game ends. The bus picks up from in front of city hall and drops off at the old Observatory by the Grove.

After the game, OPD asks all driver to be cautious of police officers directing traffic in the road at the intersection of Jackson Avenue and Highway 6. Drivers on Hathorn Road will not be able to exit at Chucky Mullins; they must go to West Jackson Avenue. Old Taylor Road traffic will have to take Belk Boulevard to South Lamar Boulevard.

“Please be patient as we trust the police officers to direct traffic for optimum traffic flow,” East said.

Fixed routes will continue until traffic is flowing. Parking on grass or where the curb is yellow is illegal and vehicles will be towed.

“To ensure that everyone has a fun and safe time celebrating we will have an increased presence in and around the downtown Square Area,” East said. “Our goal is to be proactive in preventing any disturbances or unsafe activities, and as always do not hesitate to contact us should the need arise.”

Long-term parking is discouraged from the downtown Square. Meters will be programmed to only allow someone to pay for three hours at a time.

If someone wants to park longer, they cannot pay any more money until the meter runs out after three hours.

For more information, follow Oxford Police Department on Twitter @OxfordPolice and Facebook, tune in to AM1630, FM93.7 and FM105.1 for game and traffic updates, or call the Oxford Police Department at 662-232-2400.