Never a fan of huge, crowded events or places, I knew that going to Lollapalooza in a Chicago August would be feat of patience, tolerance...a good sense of humor, and lots of hydration.
So this year, now that my kids are 12 and 7, they're way more adaptable. My youngest is less apt to take to "r-u-n-n-o-f-t", and my eldest is, like most 12-year-olds, really getting into popular music. He requested we check out French boy wonder of EDM, Madeon, on Friday night and Avicii Saturday.
Illness struck and we never did make it to see Avicii Saturday night. We also didn't get stuck in the big storm evacuation either. Which friends of ours smartly waited out at the nearby movie theatre, watching "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" until the show was back on. What a great idea!
Sunday we stopped by to check out Kidzapalooza, the fest within a fest, which was perfect for my youngest and really the 8 and under crowd in general. All kids 10 and under are free at Lolla with a ticketed adult. Set amidst cool shady trees, it was the perfect spot on a beautiful Sunday after the humidity broke. There were plenty of tots and kids and picnic blankets bathed in rock music. Little tents offered free tattoos, rock star hairdos, instrument petting zoos, and more.
So relaxed was the vibe, we spotted plenty of child-free couples there too.
My oldest suggested we check out the Playstation tent. We followed that with a short walk through Green Street: a nice gesture toward sustainability, but somewhat less effective than the hordes of volunteers picking up recyclables and junk continuously throughout the park.
For an introvert like me, Lolla is a well organized and reasonable event, seriously. If you can get past being surrounded by packs of scantily clad young folks smoking, cigarettes et cetera and acting goofy (Kidzapalooza is smoke-free), there's always some spot on the periphery to chill out and no shortage of good music, both well known and newer artists.
Remember it's Grant Park, so it's enormous. Bring water (you can refill at several stations throughout the fest with free, filtered water), sunblock, something to sit on for the kids, and your most comfortable sandals for plenty of walking.
For more tips from veteran music fest moms, check out our previous coverage of Lolla here and see more photos of our day here: