Hit the road in the motorhome in June for five days of fun and excitement along with camping camaraderie at the Camping World 400 at Chicagoland Speedway. This track not only has awesome NASCAR racing, but it also boasts four separate campgrounds with almost 2,000 campsites. RVers can stay one day or the whole week for an experience to remember.
Nicknamed the Magnificent Mile and a Half, the 1.5-mile oval track is famous for its fast cars, delicious food, cold beer, and great entertainment. From the welcome party to the live music and complimentary Wi-Fi to the kids’ activities, you won’t have a chance to get bored here. The whole family can enjoy the racing experience with the special family campground featuring surprise guests and activities.
Whether you come with the whole family or your friends, the weekend will not disappoint anyone who loves racing. You’ll even get to enjoy shuttle service, special camp BBQ parties, and did we already mention the delicious food and cold beer? It’s worth mentioning twice. Grab some BBQ and a frosty drink and sit back and enjoy a day at the races and then a night at the campground. You’ll enjoy it so much you may want to make it an annual tradition.
In previous years, the tickets for Camping World 400 at Chicagoland Speedway have ranged from $50 to $170 per person in the grandstands for one race. You can choose one of the premium packages that include things like catering, pit passes, and an indoor suite for about $2,000. Camping is separate and ranges from $130 to $1,950.
Six miles from Joliet, Chicagoland Speedway is just off of IL-53, US-52, and I-80. In fact, it is just 50 miles from Chicago, where you can visit Lake Michigan, the John Hancock Center, and the 1,451-foot Willis Tower. If you are coming from the north, you may want to avoid the main intersection of I-80 and US-52 in Joliet during rush hour. It can get congested on weekday mornings and evenings. You can avoid that area by taking Gardner Street south, and then take US-52 to IL-53.
General parking is free if you are not camping at the track, but finding a spot for your RV can be tricky. As you come in from the main roads, you will be directed where to park by staff. If you choose to park in a VIP or preferred spot, you will pay a fee unless you already have one of the VIP packages. Be prepared to show your ticket. The track provides free shuttle service to everyone, so even if you park far away, you can get a ride.
The counties of Will and Cook provide bus services that will get you around anywhere between Chicago and Chicagoland Speedway. From the Pace Harvey Transportation Center, travelers can get around the Joliet area. To go all the way to Chicago, you just have to transfer to the Chicago Transit Authority Red Line Bus. Buses run day and night and will take you to many different areas. Check online for the schedules. Fans can also use a rideshare app or a taxicab.
Chicagoland Speedway has four separate campgrounds with over 1,800 campsites. Gecko Ridge offers 20x40 sites with electric, tram service, and showers. Infield Campground offers 20x40 spaces with limited electric, tram service, and showers. Gecko Lower Ridge has electric sites with tram service and showers. Gecko Lakeside has hundreds of sites right next to the lake with electric, trams, and showers. The Family Campground is in a special section of Gecko Park and has special surprises and kids’ activities scheduled. Some of these sites also have electric and provide showers and tram service as well.
Sometimes you just don’t want to be so close to the action, or if your rig is too large for camping at Chicagoland Speedway, there are several fantastic campgrounds within a mile of the track. One of these has over 400 sites that can accommodate RVs up to 50 feet with electric, showers, and restrooms. Another offers hundreds of sites with full hookups, recreational activities, and pet stations. In addition, Des Plaines State Park, which is just 15 miles away in Des Plaines, IL, has over 5,000 acres with more than 100 campsites on Kankakee River and Milliken Lake with trails, playgrounds, and more.
Seeing how large Chicagoland Speedway is and how much there is to observe during Camping World 400, you may be worried about all the walking. Get a ride from one of the shuttle services that run in and around the entire park, including the campgrounds, parking lots, and main attractions. You won’t have to pack your running shoes to hike to the restroom, but you may want to wear some comfortable ones in case you do decide to take a walk and look around.
The weather in Joliet changes fast, and in June, you may not know what to expect. That is normal as the people who live there will tell you. It is best to pack for both summer and spring since the temps can range from hot to cool within minutes. You’ll also want to pack some tennis shoes and a hat to protect your head from the sun as well as the rain.
The gear you need at the campground will vary depending on where you stay and what amenities you have. However, it is best if you bring something to cook on like a camp stove, just in case. For the track, you can bring one 12-inch soft-sided cooler with food and drinks but no unsealed containers or glass of any kind. You’re also allowed to have a backpack up to 18 inches, which is perfect for carrying binoculars, cameras, phones, and other needs. Seat cushions are allowed and encouraged as the grandstand seats are not cushioned. Don’t bring alcohol, drugs, weapons, drones, or fireworks.
You are going to want to make sure you have two main items at Camping World 400, which are sunscreen and insect repellent. Ticks and mosquitoes are prevalent in the Midwest, so you want to keep yourself and your loved ones protected from them, whether you are at the track or the campground. You’ll also want sunglasses and a hat to protect your eyes and face from the sun. And bring lots of water to keep you hydrated.
Depending on where you choose to stay and what type of amenities they have, you may find it helpful to have your own outdoor cooking items. Bring a camp stove, grill, pots and pans, aluminum foil, and plenty of water for both drinking and cooking. It can help if you make your food at home and keep it in the freezer until you are ready to eat it. That way, it is easy and fast to make dinner at the track or on the move.
Well, you won’t have far to go to find a restaurant near the track. Six miles away, Joliet has several eateries from a steak house to a bar & grill, and even a fancy French bistro. A little further north, and you may find a seafood place and some fast food joints. No matter what you are hungry for, you can probably find it near Chicagoland Speedway.
Follow your nose to the food vendors and concessions, which are in the center of the outer track by the Main Gate and Hospitality Village during Camping World 400. From BBQ ribs to pizza on a stick, you may discover a new favorite here. On Speedway Boulevard, you can find Merchandise Midway, which has all kinds of goodies to buy from souvenirs to swag items.
Chicagoland Speedway has a serious security staff who are there to protect you as well as help you get to where you want to go. Coolers and bags will be searched, so don’t bring anything that you are not supposed to have; there is a list online. If you happen to need security for any reason, look for a nearby staffer that can help you. If it’s an emergency, don’t hesitate to call 911.
From windy to stormy, heat waves to cold spells, this part of Illinois has it all. You might even experience all of these in one day. The typical average temperatures range from the upper 80s to low 90s for the high and mid to upper 60s for the low. Be prepared for anything by bringing a raincoat, several layers of clothing, a jacket, and comfortable shoes.
The track has several first aid stations in various areas. The concourse level has one at each end by the ATMs and restrooms. A permanent medical center is located on the infield where they have medical professionals who can help with minor injuries or illnesses. If you need medical supplies or want to see a doctor, the nearest hospital is in Joliet, less than six miles away.