Yes, yes, this was supposed to go up last week. It didn't, I'm terrible, and I'm sorry. Just get yourself ready for some fun!
When and Where:
THIS SATURDAY, 11/8/14
Starting at 7AM CST
East River Flats Park on the East Bank of the University of Minnesota.
How To Get There:
The easiest way is probably to come from the west over the Washington Avenue bridge. Once you exit after the bridge, take a right on Delaware Street and then a left on to East River Parkway. The entrance to the park will be about .2 miles ahead on the right.
The other option would be to take the Huron Boulevard exit (235B) off of I-94. You'll need to get into the leftmost lane quickly, because you'll be taking an immediate left at the first stoplight (Fulton Street). Stay straight on Fulton as it merges into East River Parkway. The entrance to the park will be on your left. In total, you'll travel about .7 miles on Fulton St/East River Pkwy to reach the entrance.
$10 for parking (the City Parks Dept collects the money at the entrance).
I made it to the Flats. How will I find the TDG tailgate?
We're going to try and make it easy for everyone to find us. Our plan is to park in this general area:
It's not an exact science, so in addition to driving in this direction you can look for the following:
- A 6'9" man wearing maroon and gold Zubaz (or if it's cold, a very long pair of gold Gophers basketball warmups).
- A pair or maroon and gold Zubaz attached to a maroon Gopher tailgate tent.
- Lt. Pete Mitchell, the maverick RV of the tailgate lot:
Are you reserving spots in the lot?
No, that's not allowed. We'll try to convince any random people to leave the spots near us alone if we can and I'm sure we can sketchy park it to grab a bit of extra space, but no promises. Don't worry, it won't be a big deal if you have to park a little bit away. Just walk your gear over and join the fun!
What should I bring?
The tailgate will be BYO everything. If you want to drink it or eat it, you'll need to bring it. Don't forget a grill if you've got meat products that need cooking. Obviously I'm sure folks will be in a sharing mood, but I wouldn't recommend being me from college (i.e. a total moocher...it's my shameful secret). If you have tailgate games, bring those too!
What are the tailgate lot rules?
The Parks Department doesn't seem to have updated their webpage, as the only PDF of the rules I can find says 2011 on it. However, I've been told the rules haven't changed when it comes to the important items (no charcoal grills, etc). PLEASE NOTE: There is no longer a shuttle provided by the U. This is the big change since 2011.
Here are the important highlights. If you've ever seen the U's tailgating rules these should be familiar:
The following items and activities ARE allowed in the East River Flats Parking Lot:
- Gas grills with a maximum propane cylinder size of 20 pounds.
- Consumption of alcoholic beverages by persons of legal drinking age, and in compliance with all applicable state laws and city ordinances or policies.
- Portable outdoor furniture.
- Tents and awnings that do not block adjacent parking spaces or impede drive aisles or require the use of stakes.
- Portable generators.
The following items and activities ARE NOT ALLOWED in the East River Flats Parking Lot:
- Kegs, party balls, drinking game accessories and large quantity or common source containers of alcoholic beverages.
- Glass containers of any kind, including bottles and cups.
- Open fires fueled by charcoal, wood or other combustible materials of any kind.
- Disruptive music or noise.
- Couches or other large furniture items.
- Promotional or marketing activities without authorization from the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board.
- Sale of products, food or beverages unless permitted and authorized by the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board.
- Occupying more than one parking space.
- Saving a parking space for someone else.
How long will the tailgate last?
That's entirely up to you. Folks can start heading up to the stadium whenever they want. Some folks may not have tickets or may prefer to keep the party going. That's cool too. The post-game tailgate will need to wrap up by about 6pm, as the Parks Department will want folks out of the lot 4 hours after the game ends.
Is there a shuttle to the stadium?
As I mention above, there is not. Please know that the walk to the stadium either involves a large number of steps as you make your way up to Coffman Memorial Union, or an uphill walk up East River Parkway towards the stadium. I don't want this to be a surprise in case anyone has a bum knee or something. However, there is a shortcut that takes the worst of the walk out of the equation. How does it work? Just walk north through the lot into the East River Road Garage. You can take the elevator all the way to the top and come out just behind Coffmann Union. From there it's an easy walk down Washington (or a walk and a short LRT ride from Moos Tower to the Stadium) away from the game.
What if I can't get there until later and the Flats are already full?
A full lot has never been an issue to my knowledge. But if it somehow happens, the U sells single game parking right across the road in the East River Road Garage. If the park is packed, simply park your car there and walk on and look for the markers mentioned above.
Show up, eat food, drink things, have fun, and most importantly, FREE FLOYD!