Tips for those heading into downtown Louisville for NCAA games - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Tips for those heading into downtown Louisville for NCAA games

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- NCAA games here in Louisville don't start until tomorrow, but fans are already in town. Fans started showing up before 11 a.m. today, ready to watch open practices. It's just the beginning of a jam-packed weekend, so here are some things to keep in mind if you're venturing downtown:

Between Wildcat fans from the east, Boilmakers from the west and plenty of other fans from all over, downtown Louisville will be a mad house the next few days.

"Oh my gosh!" said Alyssa, a UK fan. "We took 30 minutes to find a parking spot. It was crazy!" 

Police estimate about 11,000 parking spots are available within half a mile of the KFC Yum! Center.

But with thousands of fans flooding into the area, and high water making things even more difficult, parking will be an issue.

"I'll be honest with you: at times it will be challenging, especially during rush hour in our community," said Lt. Joe Seelye, an LMPD traffic commander. 

The Third Street ramp from I-64 is back open, but River Road will remain closed and parts of downtown garages may still be underwater. Social media will be your friend: use Twitter hashtag #LouParking for an up-to-date list of garages and parking lots that are open.

Police encourage fans to plan ahead and leave early -- and there are plenty of places to visit near the KFC Yum! Center while you wait.

"Downtown is full," said Greg Powell of Impellizzeri's. "All the hotels are full. The streets will be full of people so there will be a lot of people in and out. It will be like a big open house party."

If you're still looking for last-minute tickets, don't fall for "too-good-to-be-true" deals. The Better Business Bureau warns fans to be aware of scam artists during this year's tournament.

And if you do score those last-minute tickets, security will be tight as you make your way into the games. All fans will have to go through metal detectors, all bags will be searched, and backpacks, large purses and umbrellas will be off limits.

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