Traffic alert: Best to walk, bike or bus to Dalai Lama at UO
EUGENE, Ore. - The Dalai Lama holds court at Matthew Knight Arena on Friday afternoon, with 11,000 people expected in person and countless more watching online and listening on the radio.
"We've got as many people in that arena as we can possibly fit," said Phil Weiler from the University of Oregon.
The tickets to the event sold out in 20 minutes. This is the Tibetan leader's first visit to Eugene.
No parking will be available in the area. To accomodate the crowd, UO encourages people to walk, ride bicycles or take a bus or shuttle from Autzen Stadium, where parking will be both free and abundant.
"The last thing people should do is try and come in their own vehicles and try and find a place to park," Weiler said.
Expect security on par with an airport.
"There'll be metal detectors, there'll be a bag check, and there are prohibited items things that you can't take through security," Weiler said.
That list includes computers, strollers, food, drinks and large bags.
This is a big event for the university, but people on campus don't seem to be too worried.
"I think overall it's going to be a really beneficial thing for Eugene and University of Oregon, so I'm just glad that he's coming," said student James Poling.
"It should be fine," said student Mike Holland. "It'll be a lot of people but at least i's for a good reason not just for a crazy concert."