Lollapalooza, one of the best and biggest attractions that Chicago has to offer during the summertime, is coming fast! In order to enjoy this weekend to it’s fullest, it’s best to be as prepared as possible and know what both the fest and the city itself have in store for you!
For starters, it’s beneficial to have necessary travel and hotel/housing arrangements made, especially in advance in case changes are needed. If you’re not staying with friends or family somewhere near or within the city, there are a plethora of hotels within the limits including the Hyatt, Congress Plaza Hotel, and Hotel 71. Because the fest is at Grant Park, there will be no on sight camping. Depending on where you are coming from, you can take a number of CTA bus routes (such as the 157 that will take you straight to Michigan Ave), a cab, the Metra to Union Station and take the 15 minute walk towards the park, or any of the “L” lines. These options cost anywhere from 2 to 8 dollars depending on where you buy tickets (for instance, tickets bought at Union Station are cheaper than if bought while riding). If you’re looking to save money, biking or walking is always an option as well! Lollapalooza.com FAQs also features information about stay and transportation for your convenience!
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XRT’s “Reverse” Rock & Roll X-Cursion To Lolla [Giveaway]
Once you have the basics of the beginning and end of the day figured out, your next step might be planning which acts you’d like to see throughout the weekend. This will give you an idea of when you have time to eat, tour the city, or just when you need to wake up! You can make a customized schedule at lollapalooza.com.
Once you’ve got a schedule set, you can explore your other festival options. There will be food and merch tents along with other booths to visit and shop around at. If you happen to have children with you, the fest includes a stage dubbed “Kidzapalooza” which features hands on activities, fun giveaways, and a number of age appropriate performers. Food included in “Chow Town” includes Kuma’s Corner, Lou Malnati’s, and Burrito Beach amongst many others including a Farmer’s Market as well. With merch and food not coming extremely cheap, you can always exit fest grounds to grab a bite. Places near by include the usual fast food joints such as McDonalds and Chipotle along with Kim and Carlo’s Hotdog Stand, Big and Little’s, or Portillos. If you’re not up for dishing out cash on merch, still make sure to keep an eye on the Lollapalooza twitter/facebook feed for on the spot giveaways!
If you happen to have a large amount of free time don’t fret! You’re in the right place. Chicago is overflowing with things to do, see, and experience. If you haven’t had the official Chicago tourist experience then it’s highly suggested you check out it’s main attractions such as the Willis Tower Sky Deck Tour, the John Hancock Observatory, Navy Pier, and Millennium Park featuring the Cloud Gate sculpture more commonly known as “The Bean”. The Bean will be hosting Summerdance throughout the weekend as well. You can visit U.S Cellular field for a White Sox game or Wrigleyville, home of the Cubs, for a variety of bars and entertainment such as their Summerfest as well as the sporting event itself. If it’s a hot weekend (and knowing Chicago August weather, it’s extremely likely) you can take some time to visit the beach and take a dip in Lake Michigan. If you’re looking for a laugh you can visit at Second City Comedy Club. If you’re a fan of the nightlife, you can visit bars such as Barleycorn’s or Billy Goat Tavern. If this weekend is all about the music, you can visit Reckless Records or Borderline Music to check out some other artists discographies. You can stay out on the town Lollapalooza aftershows featuring artists such as Alabama Shakes and Passion Pit. If those are sold out and/or out you can try and check out Enrique Inglesias, Robert Earl Keen, Demi Lovato, etc. Concertboom.com has a list of Chicago shows happening in August as well as TicketMaster. You can also stay an extra two days and attend the Coldplay Mylo Xyloto Tour Concert at the United Center. Information for all these awesome opportunities can be found at explorechicago.org.
Along with these ideas and planning suggestions, here are some tips that are NEED TO KNOW for your awesome weekend:
- Stay hydrated! It’s going to be hot and crowded and you’ll probably be out all day. You are only allowed 2 factory sealed water bottles upon entry. You can also bring CamelBaks/empty water bottles to fill up at the stations around the grounds. There will also be misting tents around the site.
- Bring sunscreen! It’ll probably hot! (Can’t reiterate that one enough!) Stay safe!
- Make sure you and whoever you come with have places set to meet (such as Buckingham Fountain in the middle or the grounds). Cell phone reception is often down with so many people attempting to use them at once.
- Don’t tamper with, scratch, or remove your wristband. THOSE ARE IMPORTANT. If you want to be allowed in and out of the fest, keep your wristband safe! (Those with only single day passes won’t be allowed to reenter)
- You CAN bring non-professional camera equipment! Make sure to document your awesome experience!
- Pets, weapons, scooters/skateboards/bikes, large backpacks, hard-sided coolers, illegal substances, carts, tents, and chairs are NOT ALLOWED.
- But you can bring blankets, soft sided coolers, hand held umbrellas, and strollers!
- If the forecast says rain, BE PREPARED! You can buy cheap plastic ponchos at your local drugstore. Wear proper attire. Make sure you have something to keep your phone,camera,etc dry.
- You’re going to be out all day probably! Wear comfortable, weather appropriate clothes and shoes!
- Disability and handicap accommodations can be found at lollapalooza.com in the FAQs section!
- There will be a Lost & Found on site!
- Have fun and make the most of your fantastic weekend!
Do you have tips you’d like to add? Share with us below in the comments section. See you in Grant Park!