Navigating Hoopfest 2017

How to do the fest right, even with Riverfront Park construction

Navigating Hoopfest 2017
Be sure to figure out where you need to be before you get lost in Riverfront Park construction during Hoopfest.

Whether you're a player or just a fan of watching Spokane's massive three-on-three basketball tournament, you'll have to know the best way to navigate the hundreds of courts and assorted snack shacks and souvenir stands. Here's a quick rundown of what you need to know:

Transportation: Ditching your car is highly recommended. The Spokane Transit Authority is offering a Hoop Loop on Saturday (6 am-8 pm) and Sunday (7 am-6 pm), and the Jefferson Loop (south and west of downtown) and Riverpoint Loop (east of downtown) have buses running every 10 minutes. All-day bus passes are just $1.50 each day. Obviously, services like Uber and Lyft are also options. Use the code HOOPFEST2017 when you book via the Uber app, and Hoopfest will allocate $1 from every ride to local charities.

Parking: If you must drive, plan on paying to park either in downtown garages or lots, or at meters on Saturday until 7 pm. Sunday metered parking is free. Spokane Arena is offering all-day parking for $6.

The Kids: The Family Fun Zone gives kids and their parents a place to kick it between games. It's in the Clocktower Meadow of Riverfront Park, and open Friday from 11 am-7 pm, Saturday from 9 am-6 pm and Sunday from 9 am-4 pm. Entry is $1.

Food: Downtown Spokane has all manner of grub, of course, or you can eat and drink at the Foodfest in Riverfront Park's Central Meadow.

The Big Games: If you're only going to watch a game or two of Hoopfest, make them count. Hit the Nike Center Court on Sunday to watch the Co-Ed Elite Championship (12:30 pm), Women's Elite Championship (2:30 pm), Men's 6-Foot-And-Under Elite Championship (5:35 pm) or Men's Open Elite Championship (6:20 pm). There's a slight chance that one of those games will have to move, but if it does, it will be close by and easy to find. You can also catch the Slam Dunk Competition finals on the Nike Center Court, Sunday at 3 pm. ♦

About Riverfront Park

Visitors to Spokane for Hoopfest might notice what we locals have been living with for a while — Riverfront Park is undergoing a facelift of epic proportions.

For Hoopfest players and fans, that means some elements of the tourney have moved either to a different part of the park, or out of the park completely.

Inside the park, you'll find the Team Check-In in the U.S. Pavilion, the Foodfest in the Central Meadow, the Family Fun Zone in the Clocktower Meadow and the Master Scoreboard in the Red Wagon Meadow. You can access those park areas through the Red Wagon Meadow; the south end of the Post Street Bridge, across from the old Washington Power building; or from the north at Howard Street and Mallon Avenue.

Among the features that have moved downtown from the park are the Nike Center Court, Toyota Shootoff Court, Hoopfest Store and Visit Spokane Information Tent, which can all be found in the Bennett Block, just off Stevens Street between Main and Spokane Falls Boulevard. The main Hoopfest First Aid Station will be on the corner of Washington and Spokane Falls Boulevard, and the Elite Courts will now be found on Stevens adjacent to the Nike Center Court. ♦

For all things Hoopfest, visit

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About The Author

Dan Nailen

Dan Nailen is the managing editor of the Inlander, where he oversees coverage of arts and culture. He's previously written and edited for The Salt Lake Tribune, Salt Lake City Weekly, Missoula Independent, Salt Lake Magazine, The Oregonian and KUER-FM. He grew up seeing the country in an Air Force family and studied...