Do you have a ticket to see Vice President Joe Biden in Sarasota?
If you don't have a ticket for the event, which were distributed Monday and Tuesday, you're probably not getting in unless you run into someone who has an extra ticket. Only so many people can be let into the Municipal Auditorium because of the fire code building capacity.
Biden actually arrived early in Sarasota on Tuesday, surprising volunteers at the Obama-Biden campaign office on Gillespie Avenue,the Herald-Tribune reported. It's unlikely Biden will mull around for too long as he's due in Ocala around 3 p.m. for an event there.
Where Do I Go To See Joe?
The speech is at Municipal Auditorium, 801 N. Tamiami Trail, and doors open at 9 a.m. Biden is scheduled to speak at 11:30 a.m. If you're not familiar with the building, it's between Boulevard of the Arts and 9th Street on the west side of Tamiami Trail, and it looks like it belongs in the League of Justice.
How's the Parking Situation?
The best options for parking is at the Van Wezel, 777 N. Tamiami Trail, which is located behind Municipal Auditorium and Centennial Park, at North Trail and 10th Street. You can easily and safely walk to the auditorium from both locations. The Municipal Auditorium lot will be reserved for security and media.
What Should I leave at Home?
Because Biden has Secret Service protection, expect airport-like security, similar to the Gov. Mitt Romney event in September, which had TSA security with metal detectors. No bags, sharp objects, umbrellas, liquids or signs will be allowed. Cameras are permitted. Expect to wait in line for a while, so bring a snack you can finish before walking inside.
(And if you were looking for the Mitt Romney rally instead, visit South Tampa Patch for info on Romney's rally at Landmark Aviation in Tampa.)
Am I Going To Be Stuck In Traffic Because of This?
If you don't have a ticket or don't want to be near the event, it's best to avoid the area due to traffic. Cars will be filing into parking during morning rush hour from both directions of Tamiami Trail, and by the time it's finished, your lunch break will be cut down. Plus, the vice presidential motorcade to and from will disrupt traffic as well.
If you're thinking about taking North Orange Avenue as a alternate north-south detour within the city, that street is closed between 10th and 12th streets due to a stormwater improvement project.
If you're going to or coming from Bradenton or points north, it's best to take U.S. 301 to enter Sarasota to avoid rally-related traffic.