Garth Brooks Missouri Concertgoers Face Hours-Long Traffic Jam

by Blake Ells
(Photo by Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images)

Garth Brooks is opening up Thunder Ridge in Missouri this weekend. The new venue is at the Bass Pro Shops Big Cedar Lodge in Ridgedale, Mo. It happens at a lot of venues, but rarely do venues open their doors with an artist this big. There are traffic issues. Here’s hoping that local officials can solve them for the final night of the run on Sunday.

Many concert-goers said that traffic was at a standstill for at least an hour and a half, and sometimes longer. Sgt. Clint Mason spoke to Ozarks First about the delays.

“There’s just not too many ways into the venue,” Mason said. “So when you have a big artist like Garth Brooks and it draws a lot of people – I’ve been on it for about 25 years. I’ve done some events like this one, but nothing to this scale. There is a lot of people trying to get in.”

Concert-goers did seem to have an easier time at the Garth Brooks concert on Saturday.

“We’re from Kansas City and the drive was pretty pleasant,” one fan told the station. “We took 7 to 13 south most of the way, and the traffic was a little dense, but we never had to stop really.”

Still, other fans had tons of problems.

“It said 12 minute delay and it’s been two hours,” said another fan. “And so we were sitting there and people were trying to cut in and a lot of people were getting upset about it.”

Traffic at Garth Brooks Concert Leaves Fans Frustrated

Many people had to walk long distances to get to the arena. Others were able to catch shuttle buses, but those are often unreliable.

“It’s so slow getting in that we are trying to shut down the highway at time just to get the shuttle buses through or emergency vehicles,” said Mason. “We’ve had to do it for an ambulance.”

Folks are already planning their exit strategies for the Sunday show. But fans are still determined to see Garth Brooks.

“We’re super excited,” said one fan. “My dad was a big Garth Brooks fan, and he died when I was a kid. So when I heard he was coming to town, I was like, ‘Oh man. I have to see Garth.'”

There’s one more chance for local officials to figure out the traffic issues in Missouri. Sunday is his last night at the venue. There’s also just one more chance to see Garth Brooks this year, and that’s tonight in Ridgedale, Mo. More than 55,000 tickets were sold for the run of concerts opening the new Thunder Ridge venue. The three shows are the last on his calendar, and he has already stated that he will no longer be doing full-scale touring. It’ll be interesting to see what that means for 2023.