Tailgating At Michigan International Speedway: 5 Fast Facts To Know Beforehand

By Brittany Frederick

NASCAR roars into the home state of the Motor City, with the Quicken Loans 400 at Michigan International Speedway. Sadly, this track is not actually in Detroit, but in Brooklyn; a city an hour and a half west of Detroit that is not at all related to the one in New York. If you kept up with that, you’re ready for our 5 Fast Facts about MIS.

1. The first rule of tailgating at MIS is that there aren’t really rules

When it comes to tailgating, MIS is pretty relaxed. Tailgating is permitted in all parking lots; all they ask is that you clean up your trash and anything else you bring when you leave. So use common sense, and everything will be okay.

2. Here, ‘reserved parking’ doesn’t mean what it usually means

At Michigan, “reserved parking” doesn’t mean that you can purchase a reserved parking spot in advance. It means that you need a special parking pass to get into certain parking lots, and those passes are not available for purchase. This is where we tell you that the parking lots open at 6 a.m. on race day and wish you good luck.

Check out more of Tailgate Fan’s NASCAR Tailgating Fast Facts.

Race fans look on during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans 400 at Michigan International Speedway.

Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/Getty Images

3. When you’re ready to head inside, the admission policies differ by gate

MIS has different rules depending on which gate you’re entering through, and those include what you can and cannot bring in. Entering the Turn 1 or Center Grandstand areas, you can’t bring in hard-sided coolers, but if you’re going into the areas known as The Deck or Keloorah, you are not allowed to have any kind of cooler. Our advice is to consult the track guest guide for the policies specific to the gate that corresponds with your ticket.

4. Here’s another track with a convenience store

If you forgot anything, MIS has a key resource for the needy tailgater: convenience stores. They’re located at Brooklyn Trails, Creekside Campgrounds and the vendor area of the Infield. Unlike other such retailers at other tracks, the ones at Michigan are open 24 hours a day, just in case you run out of ice in the middle of the night.

5. When you’re leaving, prepare for a longer than average wait

Getting out of any NASCAR race usually takes a while, but MIS will probably take you a little bit longer still. With very specific directions as to where traffic will be directed — based on which parking lot you’re in — expect to wait in line to exit. In many lots, all traffic will be pointed in the same direction. We’d suggest consulting the guest guide beforehand so you know what you’re in for.

The good news is that tailgating is still permitted up to an hour and a half after the checkered flag drops. So the other option is to have a post-race tailgate while you’re waiting for the first wave of traffic to clear.

The Quicken Loans 400 takes place at Michigan International Speedway this Sunday, June 14 at 1 p.m.

Brittany Frederick is an award-winning entertainment and sports journalist, screenwriter, and novelist. You can reach her at her official website and on Twitter.


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