NFL Draft

NFL Draft starts today: Absolutely everything you need to know

From what roads to avoid to how to snag last-minute tickets

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Dan Levy/Billy Penn

It’s here, guys. The NFL Draft kicks off tonight in front of the Art Museum, and for the next three days there’ll be dozens of NFL themed activities along the Parkway. If you’ve been waiting for this day for weeks and need a recap of essential info, or if you’re just wondering what roads to avoid, here’s everything you should know.

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Dan Levy/Billy Penn

Getting around and logistics

Up to 200,000 people could pack Benjamin Franklin Parkway over the next few days, so it’s probably best to avoid driving in the area. If you absolutely must, here’s what you need to know about what roads will be closed and when.

Here’s a sneak peek at what the parkway looked like as of Wednesday, featuring some of the attractions you don’t want to miss.

Airbnb is probably your best bet at this point, as prices hotel rooms near Benjamin Franklin Parkway are hovering around $200 a night. Here’s a guide to what’s still available.

Accuweather no longer expects rain this weekend, but it’s never a bad idea to be over prepared. NFL officials confirmed the draft will go on, rain or shine, so here’s what do you do if it starts to pour.

In addition to the 200,000 people expected for the draft, the Penn Relays will likely bring out another several thousand this weekend. Here’s how this should all (hopefully) work out.

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Dan Levy/Billy Penn

Where to be and when

There’s a lot going on during this event, so it’s a good idea to plan out exactly when to get to the Parkway and exactly where to go. Unless you have tickets, you’ll be watching the draft from the Parkway. Up to 200,000 people are expected to be there, so stake out your spot ahead of time.

It’s still possible to get seats close to the action, but you’ll have to be pretty lucky– or have about a grand lying around.

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Dan Levy/Billy Penn

Food, booze and more food

Philly Chit Chat put all the menus for the event in one place, so you can plan your meals for each day at the Parkway.

On the other hand, why not find refuge from the crowds on the Parkway? These Philly bars and restaurants are offering deals during the draft.

The Seattle Seahawks are El Bar, Chicago Bears are City Tavern, and the Detroit Lions are just a convenience store that sells shots over the counter.

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Dan Levy/Billy Penn

If you’re here for the football

“We’re not in the rehabilitation business,” Head Coach Doug Pederson said about the controversial running back.

The first ever NFL Draft was in Philly’s Ritz-Carlton in 1936, and the Eagles have since had 70 first-round picks.

No one’s really sure, but here are some guesses.

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Dan Levy/Billy Penn

Philly will be on TV!

To increase your odds of getting your five seconds of fame while the NFL is in town, we made a list of tips to get featured by media outlets from across the country, including where and when to find the cameramen.

There’ll be some shots of the city, but coverage is really focused on the draft, according to ESPN’s NFL host Trey Wingo and Senior Coordinating Producer for NFL studio production Seth Markman. Here’s a little more about how it’ll all come across.

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Dan Levy/Billy Penn

How much is this costing us, again?

Former Governor Ed Rendell said hosting an event like the NFL Draft is pretty much a win-win. The city doesn’t need to raise “a ton of money,” and it’ll likely give the economy a boost. Here are some examples of the event’s impact on former host cities.

Events like the DNC and the Papal visit to Philadelphia brought in a lot less money than expected, and one economist told Billy Penn that the draft probably won’t meet expectations, either.