Morgantown (Photo - Morgantowns Dot Com & Sign Co.)
This is one of a series of tailgating guides for Big East football schools written by Syracuse fan and tailgate aficionado TexanMark. If you have any feedback or additional information you think belongs in this guide, please drop an email message to Mark by clicking here.
First Things First: GETTING THERE
If you’re a Pitt fan, finding
For the rest of us, we drive from our
homes. Here is a sample list of
travel times by car:
This link has some good
directions from the interstates.
From the Regional Research
Institute: "WVU is easily
In order to gain an understanding of how Mountaineer Field sits in the Campus you must first become familiar with the two campuses. A good view of the two campuses and the unique Personal Rapid Transit (PRT).
Walnut Street PRT Monorail Station (Downtown Morgantown)
From the Regional Research Institute: "The university's downtown campus lies on the northern edge of the city's small central business district, and a more striking setting for a university is hard to imagine. Dating to 1870, WVU looks like the Ivy League.
Campus streets lead uphill from downtown to hills and more hills. (After four years at WVU you not only would have a bachelor's degree, but Olympic-class leg muscles as well.)
the crest of one landscape-dominating mound is
In the 1950s, WVU ran out of room to expand, and a second campus - the Evansdale Campus - was initiated three miles to the north. Unfortunately, the Ivy League architecture stayed downtown. The new campus buildings are more functional and, well, dull. Except for the coliseum, it is on a hilltop is visible for miles. The coliseum looks like a concrete UFO. Saucer-shaped, big enough to hold 14,000 beings, it appears to be merely parked there, waiting for a call from its home planet.
(A WVU alumni friend, whose devotion to the university's sports teams is fanatical, insists that the true atmosphere of the university is revealed on any given football Saturday, when its Mountaineer Stadium is filled with 60,000 people chanting "Let's go, Mountaineers" and the prize-winning marching band performs.)
When WVU began operating two separate campuses, it needed a way to connect them. It was too far to walk, the hills discouraged bicycling and shuttle buses had problems on the narrow streets.
So in 1975 planners created the Personal Rapid Transit system, which is essentially a horizontal elevator. You put 50 cents into the turnstile (WVU students use a "Mountaineer Card") (Editor Note: the PRT is FREE on game day) and select your station, just as you would choose a floor in a high-rise. You wait for a yellow, electric-powered, rubber-tired car about the size of a soccer mom's SUV to sidle up to the platform. And off you go, even though there's no driver at the wheel - and there's no wheel.
The PRT system runs about nine miles from the medical center through the old campus to downtown. Most of the passengers are WVU students and staff, but anyone may use the system."
Game Day Tailgating/Parking:
Like most big time programs the ability of visiting fans to park near the stadium is extremely limited. Unlike some other Big East programs tailgating is very common and fairly easy to do. The close in parking lots are the haven for the season pass holders and the well connected. If you arrive extra early, you should be able to purchase parking for a day at the "Green Lot". Some people like to park at the Green Lot and then wander over to the "Pit" or the Blue Lot for the vendors selling food. The "Pit" is an area most older visiting fans should stay clear from. Alcohol and testosterone rules there and common sense is lacking by most. If you tread there, you should remember you are outnumbered and to keep a sense of humor.
The Party in the Parking Lot
Using the "KISS" principle (Keep It Simple Stupid), I suggest first time visiting fans park in the free parking lots surrounding the Basketball Coliseum. It is located about ¾ miles away from Mountaineer Field and is an easy landmark for visitors to find. There are other free lots at the Evansdale Campus if you want a spot with better shade. The Coliseum/Evansdale Campus Shuttles run continuously, starting about two and one half hours before kickoff and of course run after the game. The roundtrip cost is $3.50. The University’s sports website states, "Private Parking (not affiliated with WVU): is available for a fee at several locations along Patteson Drive, Van Voorhis Road, W.Va. Route 705, University Avenue, Don Nehlen Drive, Willowdale Road and other areas near the stadium." A very nice parking map is available in Adobe Acrobat "PDF" format. A whole host of game day rules and information is provided by the University (this is a very good web link for an overview).
good article about the West Virginia Game Day experience was written by a
Washington Post reporter two seasons ago.
Tailgating in its finest form is found in Morgantown, all Big East fans need to
circle this game on their calendar to do. One last
option is to park in downtown
Like most small towns it will be next to impossible to find a room if you look a week out. If you are a fan of historic, restored hotels Morgantown has the Clarion Hotel Morgan. It is within walking distance of the PRT. The Hampton Inn is very close to the stadium and might be a good option if you get lucky with a reservation. And a new 16 story Radisson Hotel has opened in the Wharf District downtown. Your best resource is to use the local visitors' guide. Last resort if you strike out, try looking for some "Mom and Pop" Motels near Morgantown.
|Clarion Hotel Morgan||Morgantown Hampton Inn||Radisson Hotel|
decide to travel to
If you are traveling from the south or west
try these cities:
Almost all restaurants and pubs close to campus are going to be packed to the brim on a football weekend...so so enjoy the scene and have patience.
If you want to go somewhere not to far from the stadium that is a traditional haunt of WVU students/alums...I would suggest....Crockett's Lodge
The Boston Beanery II near
For older readers
who don't want to get caught in the hustle and bustle of the students...I would
suggest Colasantes Ristorante & Pub ...this is a place is just
west of Morgantown (in the city of Westover) and is very close to both I-79 and
If you want a more upscale place....I would suggest Oliverio's Ristorante ....this establishment is located on the beautiful new wharf district in Morgantown overlooking the Monongahela River
Other restaurants can be found here. BTW, you can limit your searches
on this website to various neighborhoods of
Things to Do:
If you happen upon Morgantown during the changing of the colors you need to checkout nearby Coopers Rock. It is the largest and most visited state forest in WV.
If you prefer to stay in town, the trolley is a great way to see Morgantown.
Whitewater rafting is great in West Virginia. If you are adventuresome, consider going on a river rafting tour on the New River or The Gauley.
White Water Rafting on The Gauley
There are some great courses in West Virginia, including the Pete Dye Golf Club in Bridgeport (rated the top course in West Virginia and one of the top 100 golf courses in the US by Golf Digest) and the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs. Note that neither is particularly close to Morgantown and both are very expensive.
|Pete Dye Club||The Greenbrier|
There are a number of golf courses the Morgantown Area. Here is a list. The Mountaineer Golf & Country Club is a public course for the golf challenged and/or budget minded. It is a short course that is relatively flat and inexpensive. You should be able to walk this course for less than $20, even on weekends.
Hope this helps. Thanks to Jackson1011 for helping me with the guide. TexanMark
The opinions expressed in this guide are those of TexanMark. While every effort has been made to ensure all the information presented is accurate and current, it would be wise to verify things when possible. Please note that this guide is not endorsed by Scout.com, its site publishers, administrators and/or moderators.