It’s graduation season in El Paso, Texas and gone are the days when high school graduations would be held in the school’s stadiums or football fields.

I remember my graduating class from Montwood High School (Go Rams Go) had our graduation at the SAC and other classes did too, but these days most, if not all, high school graduations are now held at UTEP’s Don Haskins Center.

If I’m being honest, this decision is pretty smart because you don’t have to worry about weather impacting the graduation and you know there will be plenty of space for family and friends.

However, there are some things you must consider if you’re heading to any graduation, or event for that matter, at both the Don Haskins Center and the Sun Bowl.

I’m going to start with the big one. Purses or bags. I say this is a big one because it never seems to fail that I see someone getting denied access to enter the venue because they were not aware of the clear bag policy.

Clear bags are allowed in the venue and so are small purses, but they must be a certain size.

If you take a big purse that is not clear, you will not be permitted to enter the venue at all. Here’s an old post from a past event at UTEP with more details on their clear bag policy.

CLEAR BAG POLICY DETAILS: 

Here’s some other details you should know about before you head to any event on the UTEP campus:

Don Haskins Center: PROHIBITED ITEMS

  • NOISEMAKERS
  • HELIUM BALLOONS
  • LARGE SIGNS/BANNERS
  • OUTSIDE FOOD/DRINK
  • GLASS CONTAINERS
  • PROFESSIONAL CAMERAS
  • VAPOR PRODUCTS (E-CIGS)
  • CAMERA TRIPODS, STABILIZERS
  • DRONES
  • AIRHORNS/WHISTLES
  • STROLLERS
  • CONFETTI
  • UMBRELLAS
  • SELFIE STICKS
  • LASER PENS
  • CAR SEATS
  • PETS

Sun Bowl Stadium: Prohibited Items

  • Aerosol cans
  • Animals (service dogs or service dogs in training permitted)
  • Artificial noisemakers
  • Balloons
  • Bats, poles, and sticks
  • Car seats and baby strollers
  • Coolers/ice chests
  • Camera lenses larger than 4"
  • E-cigarettes
  • Firearms and fireworks
  • Flags on poles
  • Glass bottles
  • Illegal drugs
  • Laser pointers
  • Lawn chairs
  • Missile-like objects
  • Objects that can be used as projectiles (i.e. balls)
  • Outside food and beverages including alcohol (exceptions will be made for those with medical requirements and special needs)
  • Scooters, strollers, bicycles, roller skates and skateboards
  • Tobacco products
  • Tripods, monopods, and selfie sticks
  • Umbrellas
  • Unauthorized video cameras and drones
  • Water bottles (one sealed, plastic water bottle permitted per patron)
  • Weapons
  • Any object that might pose a risk to the guest or others

The guest must throw the prohibited item in the trash or return the item to his/her vehicle.

ALLOWABLE ITEMS

  • Blankets
  • Stadium seat cushions must be 16in width or less
  • Bags (including clear backpacks) that are clear plastic, vinyl or PVC and do not exceed 12" x 6" x 12"
  • One-gallon clear plastic freezer bag (Ziploc bag or similar)
  • Small clutch bag (4.5" x 6.5" or smaller), with or without a handle or strap. This can be carried separately or within a plastic bag
  • Medical bags that contain health necessary items are acceptable after proper inspection and approval from venue personnel/security
  • Trained service animals as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are welcomed at the Don Haskins Center. Service animals must remain on a leash or in a harness at all times, unless special circumstances exist, and are required to rest in the seating area of the guest with the disability, rather than the aisle. Guests may take their service animal outside of the venue to relieve themselves but must speak with a Guest Services Supervisor before leaving the venue. A guest whose service animal poses a threat to the safety of other Arena guests and employees may be asked to escort the animal off the premises

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Gallery Credit: Monika