Tailgater Guide: Denver Broncos

The Denver Broncos, one of the NFL’s most successful teams of the last 25 years, are gearing up for the 2021-22 season. They seek to make waves in one of the league’s most competitive divisions.

The Broncos’ return to action also marks the return of tailgating at Empower Field at Mile High. Broncos fans are particularly ardent and come out in force whatever the weather conditions are. Here are some guidelines for game day in Denver and tailgating service at Empower Field at Mile High.

Before Game Day

Denver Broncos 2021-22 Home Schedule

Here are the teams the Broncos will play at Mile High this season. All games are on Sundays, except where noted.

Preseason

  • 28 (Sat.) – Los Angeles Rams

Regular Season

  • 26 – New York Jets
  • 3 – Baltimore
  • 17 – Las Vegas
  • 31 – Washington
  • 14 – Philadelphia
  • 28 – Los Angeles Chargers
  • 12 – Detroit
  • 19 – Cincinnati
  • 9 – Kansas City

Big Games: The Broncos’ fellow AFC West teams — the Las Vegas Raiders, the LA Chargers, and the Kansas City Chiefs — always get local fans agitated. The Baltimore Ravens have a history of mixing it up with the Broncos, as well.

Getting Tickets

The Broncos’ online ticket office has single-game tickets and links to the NFL Ticket Exchange. You can also get on the season-ticket waiting list, which at present only has 87,000 names on it. You never know. Get your tickets as soon as you can — Empower Field will fill up quickly this season.

Travel, Accommodations, and Transportation

Denver is the biggest city in the mountain states, as well as one of the most naturally beautiful towns in the U.S. Here are suggestions for getting there and where to stay once you do.

Traveling to Denver

Driving: Interstates 25, 70, and 76 all lead to Denver, and US Route 287 goes through the middle of town, as well. The stadium is close to I-25 and Business Route 70.

Air Travel: Would you believe Denver International Airport (DEN) is the third busiest airport in the United States? It’s true. It serves 191 domestic flights from all major American cities. Don’t overthink this.

Rail: Denver Union Station serves Amtrak’s California Zephyr and Winter Express Lines, as well as all RTD light rail lines.

Nearby Hotels and Accommodations

There are dozens of hotels downtown, across the South Platte River. They include SpringHill Suites, Hotel Teatro, Embassy Suites, Aloft, Hampton Inn & Suites, and The Curtis. North of the stadium, you’ll find Fairfield Inn and another Hampton Inn & Suites. See some more recommendations for downtown Denver hotels from TripAdvisor.

If you plan to host a tailgate party of your own at Mile High, skip the downtown hotels and book a residential reservation through Airbnb. It should have plenty of room for your equipment and rig, as well as a kitchen to make all of your game-day food.

Getting to Empower Field at Mile High

Light rail is your best bet for public transportation. The Empower Field and Decatur-Federal stations are both very close to the stadium. For help and any other public transit options, hit up the RTD Trip Planner. Rideshare, Uber, and Lyft are additional options.

Broncos Stadium

How to Tailgate at Empower Field at Mile High

There are few pre-game experiences quite like the diverse, hearty, and high-spirited tradition of tailgating at Empower Field. Here are some tips.

Tailgating at Empower Field at Mile High: Parking

Here are the spots you’ll want to know about when you head out to park your rig!

Cars

As is common at NFL stadiums, most of the parking closest to Empower Field is reserved for VIP parking and season-long pass holders. But there are a few general parking lots around the perimeter of the stadium property, as well as designated parking across the river at Pepsi Center and Auraria Campus. Tailgating is permitted on all stadium lots.

For single-game general parking, it’s a particularly good idea to get your permit in advance. You can do that at the Broncos’ parking page. If you wait until game day, you won’t have many options.

Here is the Broncos’ parking map.

RVs

RV parking is remarkably easy at Empower Field — it’s simply a matter of buying enough spaces to cover your rig. However, RV drivers should definitely buy their game-day parking permits in advance. Overnight parking isn’t allowed, so if you’re staying for a few days, find a nearby campground.

Where to Tailgate at Empower Field at Mile High

Tailgating at Empower Field is as simple as picking a parking lot and setting up shop. Pre-game gatherings are full of devoted fans in orange and blue, trading shots and handshakes with fellow fans and even a few opponents.

The food scene at Denver Broncos’ tailgates is surprisingly diverse. Many game-day cooks go a little overboard with complicated cooking set-ups and left-field food choices. But you’ll never be too far away from a basic but delicious burger or sausage.

Some of the tailgating hotspots at Empower Field include:

Mile High Mountain Village

This is the official Broncos tailgate near the northwest corner of the stadium, which is open to all ticket-holders. The atmosphere’s a lot like a college tailgate, with cheerleaders, mascots, and the occasional visit from a Bronco legend.

Sports Legends Mall

Sports Legends Mall at the south end of Empower Field is another official Broncos tailgate, but it’s slightly more geared toward a whole-family experience. That’s to say you can find inflatable play areas, face-painting, and kid-oriented games. But you can still get adult food and beverages, as well.

Tailgating at Empire Field at Mile High

Tailgating at Empower Field at Mile High: Rules and Tips

The Broncos have a few rules for tailgating at Empower Field, including:

  • One parking space per permit
  • Keep drive lanes clear
  • Parties must conclude 60 minutes before kickoff
  • No glass, kegs, or open-flame fires

You can review all of the regulations on the Broncos’ tailgate page.

Denver winters come earlier than most other NFL cities. Temperatures can hit sub-freezing lows as early as November and plummet southward until March. And, of course, there’s the possibility of snow.

Keep tabs on the forecast and dress accordingly (but don’t complain — Bronco fans are used to it, and most even like it).

Nearby Drinks, Food, and Attractions

Here are some of the best choices for dining, drinking, and entertainment in Denver.

Bars Near Empower Field at Mile High

Your best options for bars on game day are all downtown, east of the stadium. Sports bars include Society Sports & Spirits, Pour House on Market, Sports Column, and Larimer Beer Hall. Other joints include My Brother’s Bar, Thirsty Lion Gastropub, Gaslamp, Seven Grand, and Jackson’s LODO.

Check out more recommendations from Google Maps for bars and sports bars near the stadium.

Restaurants Near Empower Field at Mile High

Close to Empower Field, you’ll find:

 

Around a mile or so from the stadium, you’ll have options like:

Check out more of TripAdvisor’s recommendations for restaurants near Empower Field.

Denver Local Attractions

Denver’s a natural destination for those who love the outdoors, and there are several great city attractions, as well. Some of the best tourist spots and activities in the Denver area include:

See TripAdvisor’s recommendations for things to do in Denver when you’re alive.

Wrap-Up!

If you have any other suggestions for tailgating at Boston College, be sure to leave them in the comments below for other fans to see! Or if you have any questions, throw them down there too so our community can help.

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