You are allowed to bring food and drink with you to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
But what should you bring? This depends upon where you are parking, what you plan to do and of
course your tastes.
If parking inside the track, you can take whatever will fit in your car or truck. You might have large
coolers that you use to refill smaller ones for trips to the stands. You might bring lawn chairs and a
grill for some tailgaiting. Note that it's usually free to park in the infield except on Indy 500 race day.
If you park outside the track, remember that you cannot leave the speedway and then come back
in. So you have to carry all your supplies with you when you leave your car. And remember, on
race day, coolers must be below a certain size. Also, since going to the Speedway usually
involves lots of walking and stair climbing, it is nice to travel as light as you can. If you like the
track's food and prices, you might as well just buy it as you go. Food stands are scattered
Note: some people pull a little wagon to carry stuff.
Helpful hint: Coolers that have wheels and a handle, like a suit-case, might be a good idea.
The larger concession stands are ran by a restaurant company and contain the same stuff from
spot to spot. Example of their food: hamburgers ($9), Hot dogs, chicken tenders, fries.
There are smaller kiosks scattered around where you can find who sell things like Pulled Pork,
Shish Kebab, Tenderloins, Turkey Legs, Rib-eye and pork chops.
BRING YOUR OWN FOOD
A bucket of fried chicken and submarine sandwiches are a popular choice. You can even bring a
charcoal grill and have a cookout in the infield. I've seen people cook an entire lamb, then hand out
free meals to whoever happened by! You'll usually find folks at the track are very generous
(although you may not find them very generous when fighting for a parking space!) All of the
Indianapolis grocery stores will have box lunches available during racing season too. The
speedway also offers a box lunches that you can order when buy your tickets. I avoid chocolate
and other snacks that might melt. I usually grab some track food and then have some stuff in my
cooler to munch on through the race.
Beer and soda are available at the track. (Prices may vary from year to year)
Water and 16oz Soda is $5
16oz Miller Light is $5 and a large Fosters is $6
Margaritas and Bloody Marys are $8.
If you bring drinks, make sure they are in cans or plastic bottles - NO GLASS!
We used to bring in mini-kegs on race day in a bag full of ice. This supplied 3 drinkers for the
race. If you bring in a alcoholic mixer, note that it is very hard to get a cup of ice at the speedway.
The colas are sold in plastic bottles. I did find a Asian food stand outside of Turn 4 that would
sell a glass of coke with ice during the Indy 500. Venues usually require visitors bring in cans or
plastic bottles instead of glass bottles. Glass can break and possibly cause injury to patrons, where
cans and plastic bottles are safe and can be transported without incident.
Lots of people bring coolers. I have found that the collapsable soft coolers are nice, because after
you empty them, you can use them as seat cushions... assuming you used ice and not coolie
packs. Also, they usually have some extra pockets for food storage. It seems coolie packs stay
colder than ice...
There is a limit on cooler size if you are walking into the track on race day. Since seating is tight,
they do limit cooler size to 18" x 14" x 14" which is large enough to hold a 12-pack. You'll have to
pull in to the infield parking with your car to get larger coolers in.
|The Greatest Spectacle in ...Tailgating?
You can NOT buy take-out beer in Indiana on Sunday. The track has a special permit that
lets them sell beer on Sunday, but they must first wait until noon. If you want beer before
noon on Sunday, better buy it Saturday and bring it with you.
You can save time by hitting the consession stands when the race is going on. Right before
the race and during caution periods, the lines for the concession line are long.
On long practice and qualifying days, it is nice to be able to park inside the infield so that you
can stop at your car occasionally and restock your supplies or drop off souvenirs.
If grilling out, you may need a tarp for protection from rain.
Due to a drought one year, restrictions were placed on grills to prevent fires.
Propane grills are prohibited, so use charcoal.
Some coolers have wheels and extendable handles like luggage.
Backpacks and belly packs are handy for carrying stuff during the day.
It's nice to have something to wash your hands with.