Hi folks, I'm furrer4heisman from SB Nation's VT blog, Gobbler Country. Your very own corn blight asked if I would provide a vistor's guide for Husker fans making the trek to the 'Burg. He was kind enough to do the same for me last year before the Hokies paid a visit to Lincoln so I'm happy to return the favor.
I'm sure most of you making the trip already have hotel reservations (and if you got them within 100 miles of Blacksburg, congratulations!) so I'll just move on to what you should do and see this weekend in Blacksburg.
Parking and Tailgating
There are two good parking options for visitors who didn't finagle a parking pass from the VT Athletics Fund. If you don't have an RV or you aren't planning to tailgate, your best option is the public lot, which is located Northwest of VT's campus on Price's Fork Rd. It's pretty cheap (last year it was something like $10) but is a pretty long haul to the stadium.
If you have an RV or you are looking to tailgate, the best option isn't on campus. Just South of campus on Tech Center Dr. is the airport's parking lot. It's a large grass lot that's perfect for tailgating. It's where I park and it's where my tailgating group resides on game weekend. You're also able to park there overnight both Friday and Saturday. Last year it was around $10 for cars, but more for RVs. Again, it's a decent trek to the stadium but it's worth it if you want to tailgate. To get to this lot, go East on Southgate Dr. off of the 460 Bypass. Go South on Tech Center Dr. when you get to the intersection of Southgate and Spring Rd./Tech Center. You'll pass the media lot on your right and the airport lot will be on your left. I've provided a map.
Man, that is one sexy map. The best part about this lot is you're not subject to the constant harassment of Virginia Tech's parking lot enforcement gestapo. Our AD, Jim Weaver, hates tailgaters and tailgating and has gone out of his way to make sure they have a bad experience when parking in one of the VTAF lots. If you're looking to actually enjoy your gameday tailgating, go here.
And if you see a bunch of guys tailgating around an old silver Airstream, tell them Ryan from Oklahoma sent you. You might get a shot of bourbon out of it.
I haven't been to many restaurants in Blacksburg, but the one I frequent most is Backstreet's Pizza. It's got a decent buffet and isn't overpriced. It's downtown on the corner of Main St. and Lee St. Another one that others have recommended to me is Bull and Bones Brewhaus and Grill. It's on the corner of Main and Ardmore, farther South and away from downtown from Backstreet's.
Now this I have a little more experience with. I never make a trip to Blacksburg without going to Top of the Stairs. It's on College Ave., catty-corner from Virginia Tech's student union. Go in and order a "Rail". It's basically every liquor they have behind the bar mixed together with a splash of grenadine. It's delicious. On gameday, I've usually had at least one before Noon.
There's also Hokie House, which is downtown on the corner of Main St. and College Ave. You can't miss it since it's painted orange and maroon. It's another great college bar with fantastic gameday atmosphere. Decent burgers, too.
If you're looking to buy booze in the 'Burg, you'll have to buy it from a VABC store. Only the state can sell you hard liquor and the only place to do that is in downtown Blacksburg at Main and Roanoke in the Gables Shopping Center. Beer you can get from any grocery store, but particularly at Kroger. Kroger. An official parter of Virginia Tech athletics.
Just about every building on Virginia Tech's campus is built using Hokie stone, which is a kind of limestone unique to Southwest Virginia. The good thing about it is it makes every building look magnificent. The bad news is it makes them all look the same. However, the three most distinctive buildings on campus are Burruss Hall, the main building on the Drill Field, War Memorial chapel, at the Northeast corner of the Drill Field and Torgersen Bridge, just to the Northeast of the chapel.
The memorial to the 32 Hokies killed on April 16, 2007, is located on the Drillfield in front of Burruss Hall. Burruss is the main administrative building on campus and has the U.S. and Commonwealth of Virginia flags flying in front of it. The memorial is a stirring tribute to the victims of that day.
If you have any questions about Virginia Tech of Blacksburg, don't hesitate to ask them in the comments or e-mail me at gobblercountry-at-gmail-dot-com. Have fun and Go Hokies! If you're heading to the 'Burg this weekend be sure to drink a Rail for me.