MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — President Donald Trump will speak at a campaign-style rally at the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester Thursday.
The rally will start at 6:30 p.m., and city leaders have been told to expect thousands of people at the event.
Randal Thom of Lakefield, Minnesota is prepared to wait all night and all day to see the President speak. He has been posted up on his folding chair since 5 a.m. Wednesday.
“It’s kind of like a Trump tailgate party,” Thom said.
He has already been to 40 of Trump’s rallies, and Thursday will be his 41st, coming on the heels of what he believes is the president’s best accomplishment to date.
“The United States, Mexico and Canada agreement, the USMCA. In his campaign, he said he would get rid of NAFTA because it’s not right for America,” Thom said.
While some will spend the night outside waiting to see the president, Rochester city officials and law enforcement will be putting the final touches on their presidential visit plans.
“Anytime you have a dignitary, especially the president of the United States coming into the community, it’s an extraordinary type of day,” said Jenna Bowman, Communications and Engagement Manager for the city of Rochester.
The city had just a week to prepare for the visit, which is expected to bring thousands to the Med City.
“Safety is a top priority, and that’s not only for the president, but that’s also for our residents and visitors who are coming into this community,” Bowman said.
The Olmsted County Government Center, City Hall and the Rochester Public Library will all close at 3 p.m. on Thursday.
The streets surrounding the Civic Center will also be shut down, but taking the bus will be free.
It is not just the downtown portion of the city that will be impacted by the president’s visit on Thursday. Commercial flights at the Rochester International Airport may experience delays between 5 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Thursday.
Private planes will also be prohibited from flying during that time period.
If all the events run on schedule, Bowman expects things around the city will get back to normal around 9 p.m.