Chicago tailgaters come in all forms, whether it’s men, women, children or teens. There are tailgating lots specific to family-friendly tailgaters, alcohol-restricted lots and lots that are renowned for their wild partying ways. Regardless of what kind of tailgater you are or how you choose to support the Chicago Bears, it’s important to know what the restroom options are for tailgating at Soldier Field. Just like it’s important to know where your exits are when on a plane, it’s crucial to know where the facilities are located. Whether it’s finding one on a time crunch or trying to strategically place yourself at a convenient distance from the facilities, make sure to keep this in mind when tailgating.
After the renovation in 2003, Soldier Field definitely isn’t lacking when it comes to facilities. It has doubled the number of restrooms and ensured that each facility is compliant to ADA standards by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Every single restroom is fully equipped with baby changing stations and there are 14 family restrooms throughout the stadium. Solder Field prides itself on being a “green” facility complete with recycling and energy-conservative initiatives. Restrooms at Soldier Field are equipped with state-of-the-art Dyson Airblade hand dryers which replaced the paper towel system. The result is an abundance of family-friendly restrooms that are clean and efficient for the 63,000 people who visit the stadium for a Chicago home game.
Guaranteed tailgating spots for Soldier Field are located at the South Lot or Waldron Deck. These spots are designated for those who own parking passes for these particular lots. For those willing to pay an exorbitant sum of money online, parking passes are available through ebay, shopwiki or even craigslist. If you are lucky enough to have or purchase a parking pass, the bathrooms available for tailgaters will surprise you. Unlike other parking areas that force tailgaters into porta potties, the lot bathrooms are Chicago Park District-quality restrooms.
Private tailgating is an option for those with a larger group. The South Parking Lot Festival Area is a huge venue that can accommodate 1,500 cars. Parties can opt for renting half the lot for $5,000 or the full lot for $10,000. However, these are predominantly rented for large corporate events or over-the-top tailgating parties. Most private tailgating parties opt for the western corner of the Adler Planetarium Lot. The area can host 100 people and is $3,000 per game. With a number of your tailgaters chipping in, this can be a great way to spend a tailgating event. The fee comes included with two security guards, two parking spots and two private porta potties. While the bathrooms may still be porta potties, at least they are private to only your guests rather than the other tailgating-area options that are free-for-alls.
Bringing your own bathroom is the best way to get around the bathroom situation while tailgating. While nothing beats the comfort factor of a home bathroom, an RV, camper or bus is the next best thing. Cash parking lots are available on game day for Soldier Field tailgaters at the Field Museum, Adler Planetarium Lot, Burnham Harbor and 31st Street Parking Lot. While prices can fluctuate, the general fee for RVs and buses is $75. Adler Planetarium Lot is around $120 but the convenience and comfort of having your own private bathroom is immeasurable while tailgating.
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Sara Lugardo is a Korean American who thrives in writing about Asian community news in Chicago. She has a Bachelor’s in Communication and is currently working on her Master’s. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.