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August 1, 2014

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Joe Downtown: Fremont District, city ready to welcome off-road race enthusiasts

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Glenn Pinkerton/Las Vegas News Bureau

Mint 400 off-road racers parade down Fremont Street to their tech inspections on March 26, 2010.

To accommodate Mint 400 race attendees and partiers downtown, the city wants people to know there will be plenty of parking available over the weekend.

Activities surrounding the Mint 400, a series of off-road races this weekend that are expected to bring 250 teams and tens of thousands of off-road enthusiasts to Las Vegas, will kick off at 3:15 p.m. Wednesday with the first-ever “4wheel Parts Off-Road Vehicle Parade" on Las Vegas Boulevard, starting near Circus Circus.

Festivities will continue Thursday afternoon and all day Friday on East Fremont Street, and culminate with the race on Saturday in Jean.

In a news release, the city announced five blocks of Fremont Street, from Las Vegas Boulevard to 10th Street, would be closed beginning at noon Thursday in conjunction with race activities.

Some of the best free parking available is the El Cortez lot on Ogden Avenue at Seventh Street. That will likely fill quickly. Other casinos downtown, however, also offer free parking.

Once those are filled, options include the city’s metered garage on Main and East Clark Avenue, which is a seven-block walk from the Fremont Street Entertainment District.

The parking garage at Neonopolis, which is also metered, is at Fourth Street and Ogden Avenue, close to the area of Mint 400 action. Another for-fee parking garage, the city’s Red Garage at Fourth and Fremont streets is also available.

If you try to use metered on-street parking, you take your chances with the city’s meter maids, who watch them like hawks to issue tickets. And whatever you do, do not park in the nice, clean lot at 7th Street and Carson Avenue (southwest corner of the intersection). Owners of that lot tow quickly and it can cost hundreds of dollars to get your vehicle back.

More information about parking options is available on the city’s website.

Joe Schoenmann doesn’t just cover downtown, he lives and works there. Schoenmann is Greenspun Media Group’s embedded downtown journalist, working from an office in the Emergency Arts building.

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