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Old 11-30-2018, 05:55 PM
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Not sure if there is going to be any free parking in Canal Park or not. Best bet if you are driving down there, get there early, as this is a huge event, and the lots will fill up fast. They do have traffic control even out on the highway. The lanes are going to be somewhat restricted. There is a huge parking lot right in front of the event, at Bayfront, and they may also have overflow parking at the end of Railroad street, with shuttle service, but not sure on that. Most of the lots will be event parking at 5 dollars. That large lot is right next to the event, you can see it on Google Earth.

The forecast for Saturday, is gusty winds of 20 mph, and some of it may reach 30. Also 100 percent chance of snow. As far as flooding it will not be that bad, it will take a lot more than that before that will happen besides 20 mph is not that much of wind to do any thing like what had happened a few weeks ago, that was a major major storm.

The whole area will be busy that is to be expected though. Do not worry about any type of flooding tomorrow. Remember there is a huge lot right in front of the main area, and it is very close. YOU will not be able to park any closer than that though. They will be directing traffic at many locations leading down and into Canal Park. I hope you can get in that lot that is next to the event. If you can, get there early in the day would may be your best bet. Remember it is not going to be a steady 30 mph, just an few gusts of up to that high. Nothing sustained though. It will be fine, flooding will not be an issue.
Sure hope you have fun. We will be waiting until later closer to Christmas to go down there, on the train.
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:42 PM
Location: Isanti County, Minnesota
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Thanks so much, cornsnicker and demtion. You guys are awesome.

I'll post a review of our experience after we get back.
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Old 12-01-2018, 06:47 PM
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It's possible to drop people off at the entrance near the Aquarium and then go park the car. We enjoyed it except the wood smoke which was suffocating in places. It was a little slushy; boots were needed.
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Old 12-01-2018, 09:08 PM
Location: Isanti County, Minnesota
3,505 posts, read 5,039,898 times
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Just got home about 30 minutes ago. Let me just say that if we ever go back and do Bentleyville again it will NOT be on a Saturday night. We did manage to score an excellent parking spot at the arena right across from the entrance, but the absolute throng of people already there just after 5 p.m. was just too much for us to take for long. It was like being at a rock concert back in the day, just wall to wall people every which way you turned and not a whole lotta room to even move. The lights were indeed spectacular, but the wind was brutal and if I took a glove off to try and get a photo with my phone my hand went numb with cold almost immediately each time. Actually, my favorite view of the lights was from I-35 as we left to head back south. Awesome panorama. Don't mean to complain too much, I mean we knew it was going to be like that on a post Thanksgiving Saturday night, but it was the only night we could all go as a family due to our schedules. The display itself is definitely worth the effort, and I would think most people would love it - especially since it's free. We were already tired after going to the Wolf Center up in Ely earlier in the day, so I think we overdid it a bit to begin with.
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