Lollapalooza 2018 · Experience & Festival Tips

August 15, 2018

This year I went to my first Lollapalooza at Grant Park in Chicago, Illinois, and there were parts of it that were what I expected, and other parts that I didn't expect at all. Let me start by telling you about our day.

We only went on Sunday, and the festival is four days long. I can't imagine going for all four days commuting back and forth because the train home was packed. We arrived around 1:00pm, when the first act we wanted to see didn't start until 5. My mindset was, 'Well, if I paid this much money for two one-day passes, we are going all day.' When we arrived it was a quick bag check, where security was only checking for weapons. There is one long strip of food, merchandise, and shops with areas branching off to the left and right holding the different stages, Buckingham Fountain, and more food, merch, bathrooms, and hydration stations.
We walked around for about an hour and a half seeing the shops, finding stages, eating pizza, and filling up our water bottles. You ARE allowed to bring in a bottle or a hydration pack as long as they're empty.
Depending on your schedule, you do n o t need to get there earlier than your first act. Maybe like an hour or two if you want to get food or you're meeting up with people, but just to enjoy Lollapalooza, you really only need to get there in time for your music because there's not a lot to do. We walked around to see the different booths, especially the Third Man Records van, and grabbed some food, but we found ourselves with time just to chill for an hour under a tree to fill some time. We saw Gucci Mane at 5:00, Portugal, the Man at 6;30, and Jack White at 8:00pm. Since all of our acts were pretty back to back, we totally could have gone later in the day, but because we had never been we wanted to see what the festival had to offer.

I feel like I have different tips depending on the festival, but there are the tips that I have for you if you're attending Lollapalooza:

· Make sure you bring a water bottle, though I would probably recommend a hydration backpack if you can get one, if not, a water bottle will do. They have hydration stations near each stage so please, please, please stay hydrated throughout the day. They make it so easy.

· Prepare for the crowd size. You have to remember that you're going to Lollapalooza, which had an estimated 100,000 people every day. Be considerate, use your manners, and make sure you have your patient pants on before you leave the house. Also, prepare for a lot of children under the age of 18. We had a group of fourteen year olds in front of us during Gucci Mane. There are children walking around everywhere, and a majority of them were under the influence of something. I feel like a grumpy old lady, but regardless of who you are just be nice to people.

· S u n s c r e e n. I don't think the let the aerosol sunscreen in the vicinity, and you'll spend $9 on a bottle in the city, so make sure to stop and pick some up before you head to Lolla. They also sell some at a little stand there where they keep snacks, and sunglasses, too. But, it's hot, and the only shady spots are under trees which are usually packed.

· Make sure you're eating. When you get wrapped up in watching a performer and moving from stage to stage, the thought to eat can slip. Between acts, stop and grab a slice of pizza, or a cone of fries. They're easy to eat while you walk, and it's enough to keep your stomach content without overdoing it.

· Bring a small bag with you. I bought this waist pack and it fit everything I needed aside from a water bottle. I would suggest a drawstring backpack to hold a bottle, and any merch you buy. But this was the perfect size for wallets, phones, and keys. They have lockers, but the lockers are $20/day, so bringing a bag will save you the money. If you don't feel comfortable bringing any debit/credit cards with you, they offer a cashless option with your wristband.

I also saw Jack White four rows from the barricade, and I can't stop thinking about it. <3

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