Fans in Jurassic Park, the uber-popular fan zone outside Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena, will be roaring tonight — and despite foul weather they’ll be doing cheering on their team outside.
Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment (MLSE) briefly cleared the massive line-ups to get into the zone amid heavy rain and localized flooding. However, just before 6 p.m. ET, the organization decided the event would go ahead outdoors.
“We will continue to monitor the weather situation and Scotiabank Arena will be a lightning contingency if conditions impact the safety of our fans prior to tailgate opening at 7 p.m.,” said spokesperson Charzie Abendanid in an email.
The move comes hours before the Raptors play the Golden State Warriors in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena, in Oakland, Calif. Tip off is set for 9 p.m. ET.
If the Raptors win tonight, it will be the franchise’s first championship. It will also mark the first time a Canadian team wins the NBA crown.
Fans brave pouring rain
Toronto Raptors fans had been camping out for hours in pouring rain to get into Jurassic Park when they were forced to leave the line. Security guards told a Radio-Canada reporter on the ground that fans had to leave due to the risk of thunderstorms.
Reporter Christian Noël tweeted video of the deserted lines as heavy rain came down.
La file pour <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/JurassicPark?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#JurassicPark</a> est déserte, le tonnerre gronde, la pluie tombe. ⛈🌩💦⚡️🏀🦖 <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/WeTheNorth?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#WeTheNorth</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/NBAFinals?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#NBAFinals</a> <a href=”https://t.co/y6EVt0xN2T”>pic.twitter.com/y6EVt0xN2T</a>
Other images posted on Twitter showed flooding in some areas, with fans crossing large puddles atop shipping palettes.
With forecasted rain and thunderstorms underway, it is flooding outside Jurassic Park and security is erecting a bridge with woodblocks for people to cross. <a href=”https://t.co/Q7IrHqAuZD”>pic.twitter.com/Q7IrHqAuZD</a>
Earlier, the City of Toronto warned it’s anticipating huge crowds in the downtown core, and urged people not to drive to the area.
“Please consider riding public transit, cycling, walking, taxi or ride hailing,” the city said in a statement.
Toronto police will be present throughout downtown for public safety purposes; additional closures or restrictions may be in effect as required, the city said.
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