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Minnesota Renaissance Festival Tips: Weekends 1-3

Parking and Heat

By Tinka Boudit She/HerPublished 6 months ago Updated 6 months ago 4 min read
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Major portions of this article were compiled by members of the Minnesota Renaissance Festival Cast, vendors, patrons, and more.

This is informative only - all information is subject to change. This article is not written on the behalf of Mid-America Festivals or The Minnesota Renaissance Festival Management.

Getting there and parking:

There are three available options to you:

1) Park and Ride: There will be several designated park and ride locations in the larger Shakopee area for you to utilize. This is the economy option at $5 (with a $5 voucher you can use to take off on the price of a ticket at the front gate, OR use as a coupon in the festival merchandise shops). This is as close to free as it gets, and involves the least amount of walking!

2) Buy a pass ahead of time. This is the business class option. $10 ahead of time guarantees you on-site parking in the newly improved fields. Carpooling is recommended! Time to cash in that $5 your buddy owes you from 2 years ago. THESE ARE DAY-SPECIFIC. So, plan ahead!

3) Pay a lot at the lot. This is the luxury money-to-burn gambling option. This will cost you $30 and there’s no guarantee you will even get a spot. Don’t do this. You’re better than this. We raised you better than this. Seriously. Don’t do this. Give me $20 instead and just buy your pass ahead of time.

The parking company is only accepting credit cards if you try to pay to park without a reservation. No cash will be accepted. Online and early is the smartest route if you must bring your car. The gates will open at 8am

More info from MNRF

If you’re rude to the parking staff, you’ll be asked to leave/turned away or escorted off site. There will be a 7,000 vehicle cap each day to park on site. This includes motorcycles.

All Park & Rides are $5 per person over the age of 12. People who use the Park & Ride system will receive a $5 credit that can be used on tickets or souvenirs, not at vendor booths. There is going to be a transit hub near Kings Gate.

Additional Park & Ride info

Accessible parking:

Patrons with mobility disabilities - including those traveling with personal wheelchairs, electric scooters, or other mobility devices - should park in one of our Disability Parking spots, located a short distance from the main Festival entrance. Designated parking spots are available in the King's Gate parking lot for patron with disabilities. A valid disability parking permit is required, and standard parking rates apply. Patrons with mobility issues and no disability parking permit can be dropped off near the front gate and the vehicle must then park in a general parking spot as directed by the parking staff.

Park & Ride options are also available for patrons with disabilities at Minnesota Valley Transit Authority Park and Rides; Eagle Creek, Southbridge Crossings, and the Burnsville Transit Hub.

Pick Up/Drop Off/Uber/Lyft:

There is NO CHARGE for parking if you are dropping someone off or picking them up from the Festival. Stay in your vehicle at all times and follow all directions of the parking attendants. Please use the entrance on the south side of the Grounds (King’s Lot) via Red Rock Drive.

169 South entrance and exit of the Minnesota Renaissance Festival

***

Now you're here, and it's HOT!

1. Have a plan. Know where you’d like to go and plan places to sit/rest.

2. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Eat too! Pickles are a great way to get your electrolytes back!

3. Take a look at a map of grounds if you aren’t familiar and scope out where first aid is, just in case.

4. Please know many alcohol booths have access to security radios OR have the safety services phone number. They can radio or call site crew or Safety Services in case of medical emergency. Food booths or crafters may NOT have a radio, but the pubs do. Cell phone service may NOT get through, be aware.

5. Bring an umbrella for shade, wear a comfortable outfit, and comfortable shoes.

6. Ask if you need help! Even if it’s not an emergency but you need help? Ask! Street characters, shop owners, etc.

7. The festival season is 7 weekends, 16 days. If you can, go more than once. Do not over-exert yourself on hot days if you do not have to.

Know the differences and how to spot them

Festival map

***

Speed round, checklist:

What to wear - Costumes are optional, Dress for the weather, Wear sunscreen, Shoes matter

Grab your cash- Food vendors are cash only, Not all vendors take cards, Tip those performers

Tickets and entrance- Printing your tickets is best, Have your tickets pulled up (if digital), Turn up the bright on your phone, Re-admission stamp is required.

Meet and greet- Remind others when you plan to go, Tell friends where you parked, Tell family where to meet if lost, Plan where your group will eat. ...Because your cellphone signal may be jammed or overloaded.

***

Take care and have fun! See you in the lanes!

For all things Tinka Boudit

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