The annual campout for Big Blue Madness tickets began early Wednesday with hundreds of people claiming space for about 585 tents outside Memorial Coliseum, according to the University of Kentucky.
Rain didn't seem to dampen the desire to get free entry into this year's Madness on Oct. 16. The Rupp Arena event introduces the men's and women's basketball teams and is the unofficial tip-off to their seasons.
People camp out to receive the so-called control cards that get them access to tickets. A limited number of cards will be handed out at 2 p.m. Friday in advance of the ticket distribution at 10 p.m., UK announced earlier. The ticket distribution was switched to Friday instead of the typical Saturday, so fans can also attend Saturday's UK football game against Eastern Kentucky University.
Fans were allowed to line up across Avenue of Champions from the coliseum. About 5 a.m. Wednesday, they were allowed to cross Avenue of Champions, where they stopped near the curb until they were allowed to find their tent sites.
The area was full and no new campers would be allowed, the university announced later Wednesday morning.
With the control cards, campers will receive the maximum four tickets per card Friday night. Fans with control cards are encouraged to line up for the ticket distribution by 8:30 p.m. Only one control card per person will be accepted.
The tickets will also be available on Ticketmaster and at Memorial Coliseum ticket windows on Euclid Avenue.
There is a limit of four tickets per household.