Ernest & Scott
Kelly’s Logan House
Trolley Oyster House
8th & Union Kitchen
Originating in 1979 with the Halloween Loop, the Loop is a citywide party in which club patrons pay a one-time cover charge to visit nightspots throughout Wilmington. The majority of Loops are roaming costume parties, with patrons dressing for the theme (Halloween, ‘70s, St. Patrick’s Day). Free shuttle buses are provided throughout the evening to transport Loopsters to and from participating venues.
The Halloween Loop is the granddaddy of all Loops, and regularly draws thousands of people to Wilmington. The City Loop Series has become a Wilmington tradition, and is credited with helping invigorate the city’s nightlife.
Check for updates on upcoming loops or call 655-6483 for information.
Question: Where do I start the Loop?
Answer: There is no official starting point. Select the nightspot you’d like to visit first, pay the cover charge, and you will receive a wristband that gains you admission to all other Loop venues without paying another cover.
Question: What time do the buses start running?
Answer: 8:00 p.m.
Question: What time do the buses stop running?
Answer: The buses stop running their regular routes at 12:45 a.m. and begin making last-visit stops at 1 a.m. Buses stop running at 1:30 a.m. Tip: Be at the last venue you plan to visit by 12:30 a.m.
Question: What does my wristband entitle me to?
Answer: Admission to any Loop venue without paying another cover charge and free transportation on the Loop shuttle bus service.
Question: Do I need to wear a costume?
Answer: No, but you will feel much more a part of the party if you do. The Loops are costumed pub crawls, especially the Halloween Loop. For the St. Patrick’s Day Loop, be sure to wear green. For the Pink Loop, purchase a commemorative T-shirt and you help raise money for breast cancer research as well as get into the Loop for free. For the Santa Crawl, a santa hat or costume gets you in free. And many venues sponsor costume contests so be creative and you could go home with a prize.
Question: Does the Loop provide shuttle service to Newark and/or the University of Delaware?
Answer: No. Private groups do coordinate bus trips to Wilmington but they are not sponsored by the Loop.
Question: Where should I park?
Answer: At the venue you plan to be when the Loop concludes (1 a.m.). Don’t wait until after 1 a.m. to catch a bus back to where you parked. There is no guarantee you will be able to accomplish that.
•Riverfront – acres of free parking. That is where the Loop buses meet to begin their routes.
•Downtown – 8th & Orange surface lot is free on weekends. Shananigans has a parking lot directly across the street (2nd & Market).
•Trolley Square – parking is very challenging as the area is surrounded by residential. DO NOT park in the Trolley Square Shopping Center nor plan on parking in the Acme parking lot. Several Trolley nightspots (Kid Shelleen’s, Grotto Pizza) have their own parking but it is limited…so get there early.
•Union Street area – street parking is your best option. Do not plan on parking in any of the establishments lots…most are very limited.
•Easiest options: Riverfront lot then walk to either Timothy’s or Firestone and catch the bus.
•Downtown: 8th & Orange lot.
For Halloween Loop
Last Call Lots: Riverfront Commuter Lot (Justison St., across from Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant) and Wilm. Parking Authority Surface Lot (Downtown, 8th& Orange streets). These lots will offer free parking and the ability for you to leave your vehicle overnight and pick up the next day bynoon. This is a complimentary service and you will not receive a parking ticket or be towed. DO NOT DRINK & DRIVE!
Question: Where do you purchase your wristband?
Answer: At the first venue you visit. There are no advance sales of Loop wristbands. Wristband sales begin at 7 p.m. the evening of the Loop. Halloween Loop wristband sales begin at 5pm
Question: When did the Loop series start?
Answer: The first City Loop was the Friday after Thanksgiving in 1979. The Halloween Loops began the following year, in 1980.
Keys to a Successful Loop:
•Start early (for the Halloween Loop, most venues have a waiting line by 10 p.m.).
•Wear a comfortable costume. Make sure you can see where you are walking and use the rest room with ease. Also, make sure the costume doesn’t cause you to become overheated (venues get very crowded on the Loop).
•Designate a sober driver or plan to stay in the city for the evening at a friend’s place or one of the city’s five hotels.
•Don’t drink and drive! Call the Delaware Designated Driver Program at 302/999-9079 if you are with anyone who plans to drive and is not sober.
•Plan your Loop course so that your last stop is near your home or your car. It’s difficult to catch a bus across town after 1 a.m.
•Tip the bus drivers. It’s a difficult evening for them and they appreciate the extra contributions.
•CHECKPOINT STRIKEFORCES ARE OUT ON LOOP NIGHTS. Stay with a friend, book a hotel room, ask the bar to call a cab for you but DO NOT DRINK & DRIVE!