More than 12,000 fans in all arrived by rail for the country singer’s show, transit officials said.
Kenny Chesney’s “No Shoes Nation Tour” not only set a record for the largest crowd ever at Target Field, it also helped Metro Transit set a record for pre-sale tickets on the Northstar Commuter line.
The transit agency said it sold 530 advance tickets for the two Northstar runs from Big Lake to the Minneapolis ballpark for last Friday’s concert. That eclipsed the previous pre-sale record set just two weeks ago when 466 advance tickets were sold ahead of the Twins-Kansas City Royals game on June 30.
In all, more than 2,000 people took the Northstar Line to the big show. Metro Transit employees counted another 10,000 people who arrived by way of the light-rail line that runs from the Mall of America in Bloomington to downtown Minneapolis.
Spokesman John Siqveland attributed the record pre-sale on the Northstar Line to heavy promotion in the St. Cloud area. Many fans from there drove to Big Lake to catch the train.
“People are finding that it’s an easy and fast way to get in and out of Target Field with no hassles,” Siqveland said.
In addition to its regular weekday rush hour service, Metro Transit offers special Northstar runs for Twins and Vikings games and special events. Last year the agency did not run a train for the Chesney and Tim McGraw concert at Target Field.
“We got many inquiries as to why we didn’t,” Siqveland said. “There clearly is a demand for it.”
Metro Transit plans to run special Northstar Commuter trains for the Skyline Music Festival on July 26. The concert, also at Target Field, features Soul Asylum, Big Head Todd and the Monsters, Matthew Sweet and the Gear Daddies.
Riders can buy Northstar tickets at www.metrotransit.org/northstar. Round-trip tickets begin at $12 from Big Lake, with lower prices from stations in Elk River, Ramsey, Anoka, Coon Rapids and Fridley.
Family passes, which allow two adults and up to three children ages 6 to 17 to ride, are $20 from Big Lake and less from stations closer to Minneapolis.
Tim Harlow • 612-673-7768