Football and smoked turkey legs will compete Saturday for people’s attention.
Drivers can expect heavy traffic around the Winston-Salem Fairgrounds and BB&T Field with thousands of people planning to attend the Dixie Classic Fair and Wake Forest’s home football game.
Louisville will play Wake Forest at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at BB&T Field, which is just across from the Dixie Classic Fair.
The stadium can seat 31,500 fans. Wake Forest University athletic officials expect about 28,000 people will attend the game.
“There will be a lot of traffic down in that area,” said Steve Shutt, a spokesman for the WFU athletics department. “If you are not going to the game, you might want to avoid that area.”
Rachael Lough, a spokeswoman for the Dixie Classic Fair, said that nearly 40,000 people are expected to attend the fair today. The fair will be open from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Winston-Salem State University is playing a home football game against Johnson C. Smith University at 1:30 p.m. at Bowman Gray Stadium, adding traffic to U.S. 52.
Nearly 5,000 fans are expected to attend the game, said Trevin Goodwin, a spokesman for the WSSU athletic department. No traffic congestion is expected around the stadium.
Police Lt. Rick Newnum said that traffic to the fair and football game will be congested along many streets near the fairgrounds and BB&T Field, including University Parkway, Deacon Boulevard, and Shorefair Drive as well as 27th and 28th streets.
“People are going to have to allow extra time to get to the football game because of the fair,” Newnum said. “The area can handle only so many (vehicles) at a certain time.”
WFU has hired many city police officers to work off-duty directing traffic in the area, Newnum said. Officers also will be stationed in the parking lots around Joel Coliseum and BB&T Field.
“It will be a busy fair night, and it will be a well attended football game,” Newnum said. “People will have to be patience.”
Police will close Shorefair Drive from Deacon Boulevard to 28th Street when the fair’s fireworks display begins at 9:15 p.m. today, Newnum said.
The timing of the fireworks is planned to coincide with halftime of the football game, said Siobhan Olson, a spokeswoman for the Dixie Classic Fair.
“We are hoping that people will come to the fair, and then go to the game,” Olson said.
U.S. 52 will be open for fans to travel to the Wake Forest and WSSU football games, said Pat Ivey, the division engineer for the N.C. Department of Transportation in Forsyth County.
Peters Creek Parkway and Business 40 West to its Main Street exit will help drivers get to the fair and BB&T Field, Ivey said. Work will continue Saturday on the Business 40 renovation through downtown Winston-Salem.
Parking for the fair in the Joel Coliseum’s parking lot will cost $20 vehicle and $60 for buses and recreational vehicles, WFU athletics said on its website. It will typically cost drivers $5 to $10 to park their vehicles today in the private lots around the fairgrounds.
WFU is providing a remote parking lot at Winston-Salem First Church on University Parkway with shuttle service to Joel Coliseum. Parking at the church will cost $10 per vehicle.
The first shuttle begins at 11:30 a.m. and will end at 11:30 p.m.
Today’s forecast in Winston-Salem calls for a high temperature near 79 degrees with sunny skies. There is a 20 percent chance of rain tonight with a low temperature around 60 degrees with mostly cloudy skies.