What Bears fans need to know before going to Soldier Field


The Bears have spent the week enumerating the ways in which Saturday’s harsh winter weather could affect their gameplan when the Bills travel to Chicago. On Thursday, the team announced fans braving the elements at Soldier Field will need to make some changes too.

“Winter storms can bring unpredictable factors that impact Chicago Bears’ home games and create unique challenges for fans to experience a game at Soldier Field,” the team said in a statement. “Inclement weather is forecasted across northern Illinois starting Thursday. With extreme temperatures and dangerous wind predictions, there are ways that fans can stay safe and show up for the players as they take on the Buffalo Bills this Saturday, December 24th.”

The Bears will help fans try to stay warm by offering hot chocolate and coffee throughout the stadium and via in-seat vendors. In addition, there will be warming stations for fans at the Gate 31 Plaza behind section 146, and on the service level down the southwest tunnel by the Dr. Pepper Patio. The team is also permitting battery-operated clothing.

The Bears are limiting what fans can bring, too. Tailgaters will not be allowed to use tents, flags, firepits or open flames, any oil based cooking or frying including deep fryers, infrared panels or propane heaters. Canopies, umbrellas, balloons or other oversized inflatables will not be allowed either. The team left open the possibility of further grilling restrictions due to high winds, and strongly discourage using charcoal grills, as well.

There will be some slight changes for how fans can get to Soldier Field, and how they can enter once they get there. CTA will add extra service on the No. 128 and No. 146 buses. Gates 3, 5, 7, 12, 23 and 50 will be closed at Soldier Field. The team says fans who use Gate 50 should consider Gates 38, 45 and 47 instead.

Finally, the Bears will not allow fans to bring in cardboard to sit on, or put under their feet. The team also reminded fans to drink water to combat dehydration from the cold.

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