Corn Nation welcomes our fellow football fans to Lincoln, Nebraska! We've had numerous requests for a travel guide to Lincoln from fans of other teams planning a pilgrimage to Lincoln, so we're happy to oblige.
Fellow Husker fans, feel free to add your own suggestions for activities or correct any errors. While I've attended nearly every game for the last twenty years, there's no way I've experienced more than a fraction of what's happening around the stadium. We'll keep this updated to make this a useful resource for all fans.
If you'll be arriving in Lincoln Friday night, the number one spot to be is Misty's in Havelock. The Husker pep band and cheerleaders stop by early in the evening for a pep rally. This is the place to be on Friday night's before a Husker game. Should be packed, so if you aren't there early, you might miss out.
Memorial Stadium is located just north of downtown, so many fans choose to go bar hopping instead of tailgating, especially since many parking spaces are in downtown garages. Even if it's a morning kickoff, most establishments will be open bright and early. up for the game, downtown Lincoln should be hopping on Saturday.
As for downtown bars, there are a couple of excellent choices depending on your interests.
Heavy drinking? Barry's is probably your choice. It's located about 3 blocks south of Memorial Stadium at 9th and O.
Drunken Rowdiness That You'll Remember Except Under Oath? Has to be the Sidetrack Bar with Joyce & Paul (and their rated "R" lyrics). About a block east of Barry's near 10th & O. Expect long lines here if you're not there early.
Another good area to wander through is the "Haymarket District" located around 8th & O, just southwest of campus. Many bars and restaurants are located there.
Parking around the stadium is usually pretty tight as donors get all the good spaces. The closest parking for visiting fans is probably at Haymarket Park, a baseball stadium about a 10 minute walk from Memorial Stadium. Downtown also has several parking garages if you are planning to head there before the game. Haymarket Park is maintained by the University, so it's officially alcohol free. (Hint, hint, wink, wink. If you decide to imbibe, pour it in a plastic cup rather than flaunt a can or a bottle. Don't be like Brent Musberger!)
If you plan to cook out before or after the game, Haymarket or the neighborhoods north of the stadium might be your best bets. If you want to hit the local establishments, plan to head south to downtown. East of the stadium is the campus; parking will be EXTREMELY limited there. Most of the lots around the stadium are reserved for boosters, so give yourself plenty of time to find a spot.
I like to make sure I'm at the gates to the stadium 30 to 45 minutes before kickoff. That way, I have plenty of time to get in, and get to my seats. (I like to time things so I'm getting to my seats just after the National Anthem; that way, I'm sure to be ready for the Tunnel Walk introduction, which occurs about five minutes before kickoff.)
Those of you staying in Omaha should allow at least 3 hours before the game and probably 2.5 to 3 hours to drive back; I-80 is only two lanes most of the way between Omaha and Lincoln and frequently gets backed up.
Enjoy your visit to Lincoln! Look for me at the game; I'll be the one wearing red!
(OK, fellow Husker fans! Tell me what I've gotten wrong, missed out on, or don't know about. )
[Editor: This was originally published a while back, but we're pulling it forward for Virginia Tech fans that might be traveling to Lincoln. Comments will be re-opened.]