2010 Lollapalooza Preview
Summer’s not complete until August comes around and Lollapalooza comes to town. Grant Park hosts a three-day festival where alternative rock, hip-hop, punk rock and pop artists rock the stages of Lollapalooza. Pass under the giant blowup Lolla letters for entrance into a land where the beer flows, plastic wine bottles pop, two Chow Town locations serve up authentic Chicago dishes, and your music idols light up the stages. Pick up a map and create a schedule — Buckingham Fountain is the center of the event with NorthPalooza and a main stage to the left and Southpalooza and a main stage to the right. If you’re into planning ahead, you can create a personalized schedule online to ensure you know what time your favorites are playing and which stage they’re appearing on. With a park this big and eight different stages, you don’t want to miss a note.
Grant Park — surrounded by downtown’s towering buildings, the Field Museum and the pristine lakefront — creates a venue unlike any other. Every year famous artists and struggling musicians alike flock to Lollapalooza to enhance their image, create a name for themselves, or just jam out. In 2010 Lady Gaga, the woman who turned the fashion world upside down, and is being named one of the world’s greatest pop icons, “Telephoned” to announce she is performing her entire Fame Monster concert! Lollapalooza will draw her largest audience to date. You can’t have grunge without Soundgarden — Grammy Award winning singles “Black Hole Sun” and “Spoonman” will have Lolla audiences singing along. And Green Day — accredited with putting the punk revival into process — will also be headlining. Over ninety bands will hit one of the eight main stages, making this year’s Lollapalooza one for the charts.
Take a break in between sets to enjoy some of the other activities Lollapalooza has to offer. Event creator Perry Farrell (Jane’s Addiction singer) hosts Perry’s, an electronica fantasy, where a giant canopy houses a state of the art DJ booth where artists spin live. This years appearances include Kid Cudi, Bassnectar, Deadmau5, and MSTRKRFT. Or meet up with friends at Lederhosen’s Biergarten, where can enjoy a better brew than your standard Bud Light. After walking around all day shady benches are prime real estate and brews go down like water. State Farm makes the trek between stages a little more convenient by offering the State Farm Bag Valet. As a seasoned Lolla goer, I can admit to ditching an umbrella or two just to make the load a little lighter. This year my travel items will be safely stowed away. Challenge your friends at PlayStation Central and test drive exclusive blockbuster games; you can even enter to win VIP passes, stage passes to the Playstation Stage or a PS3/PSP system prize pack. Don’t forget to check out the f.y.e. autograph tent to get your favorite artists’ John Hancock and meet them in person!
A three day general admission pass pays for itself when you think about all the different concerts and other entertainment one can experience. Full weekend passes sell for around $215 dollars. If you’re not ready to bear the heat, sun exposure and sweat off all those hot dogs and brewski’s, you may want to upgrade. Lolla Lounge VIP members enjoy many exclusive rock star amenities. Two Lolla Lounges are located at each end of Grant Park with elevated viewing platforms; amenities include air conditioned restrooms, daily gourmet happy hour, beer, wine and specialty libations, and golf cart shuttles between Lolla Lounge North and South. Oh and did I mention mini-spa treatments? A Lolla Lounge VIP pass can be yours for around $850 dollars. But if celebrity status is what you crave, rent your own private VIP Cabana and swoon friends with your elevated, air conditioned cabana with private viewing platform. But that’s not all: your cabana is attended by your own personal staff serving beer, wine and drinks at your beck and call. A light fare buffet can solve your hunger problems when a golf cart ride to the VIP Lolla Lounge North is too tiresome. Cabana capacity ranges between twenty-five and forty-five people, price is available upon request. Personally I believe that toughing out the unpredictable Chicago weather, mingling among the various characters Lolla attracts, and fighting the crowd to be closest to the stage is all part of what makes Lollapalooza so memorable. I’ll be the one decked out in Gaga garb among the masses of music lovers, so… catch me if you can.
Check out our article on lollapalooza for more information on the festival origins.