Large crowds, busy traffic expected for Southern Heritage Classic weekend

Braving the busy weekend in Memphis

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - A busy weekend is in store for Memphis, from the 30th annual Southern Heritage Classic to Cooper-Young Festival.

Come Saturday, the Liberty Bowl will be filled with fans for the Southern Heritage Classic-- but with a lot of fans comes a lot of traffic. So, Memphis police and stadium officials are breaking down what to expect.

“There will not be an empty spot. That's how many people we are expecting for this year’s classic,” said Fred Jones, Southern Heritage Classic.

With big crowds expected, Memphis police are stepping in.

“The traffic or personnel that we have assigned to Central and Hollywood, you will see an increased police presence there to help the pedestrians negotiate and navigate their way to the stadium as they cross those busy roadways,” said Col. Keith Watson, Memphis Police Traffic Special Operations.

There will be some changes to traffic patterns.

“Traffic that's on Hollywood that's southbound turn Southern will only have to make an east bound turn, which is a left turn to leave the stadium,” said Watson.

First responders will also have medical tents set up for the weekend's events.

“That’s equivalent to a level 3 trauma center, to handle any treatment or triage that we’ll face or mitigating,” said Watson.

Tailgating begins Friday morning with the on-site lots open at 10 a.m. On Saturday, they will open at 8 a.m.

"$20 fee to come on property. Other off-site locations will be selling parking as well,” said Thomas Carrier, Liberty Bowl general manager.

If you decide to use a ride share app instead, police will be at designated pick-up locations.

“We encourage each and every citizen if you see something, say something and report it to police,” said Watson.

The game will kick off at 6:07 p.m. Saturday night.

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