The Right (and Wrong) Age to Attend a Festival

August 6, 2013 at 8:44 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to attend the epic music festival known as Lollapalooza: 3 days of amazing artists with 300,000 people in attendance at Grant Park in Chicago.  The line up and experience of the festival brought out a diverse crowd of young and old, hip hop lovers, metal heads, rockers and club goers who came to see artists such as Nine Inch Nails, The Cure, The Killers, Lana del Rey, Ellie Goulding, Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper, Mumford and Sons, Tegan and Sara, Knife Party, Queens of the Stone Age and many other established artists and up and comers.  Attendees were also allowed to bring children under the age of 10 for free, to enjoy both Kidsapalooza and the adult concerts.  Many colored mohawks on young faces were in the crowds.

And to be perfectly honest, I thought it was pretty awesome to see young kids rocking out to dance beats from Perry’s stage.  Even though they were surrounded by illegal drug activity, all of the parents I saw were very responsible with their children whom, in turn, were able to have a good time without causing a scene.

It was also great to see some older folk rocking out.  In my mind a big reason I wanted to attend this year was because I wanted to enjoy it before I got “too old.”  These older folk proved me wrong.  The 50-60 year olds were rocking out just as much as the 20-30 year olds.  There didn’t seem to be a lot of them, because probably many of them believe like I did that they wouldn’t have the energy, but with age comes wisdom and knowing how much they can exert themselves.  I didn’t see not one older person lying down or getting sick.  The older crowd really held their own.

As for the 16-24 year old crowd, I shake my head.  The things that they were wearing and the drinking and drugs, I mean, I remember that stage all too well, though I was never the one passing out in public places.  I get having fun but not being able to make it through the first day is a real shame.  I saw people completely gone by 2:30 on Friday — the day barely just begun.  At this age, there is a real lack of self-control and understanding one’s limits, and the drugs nowadays are not the same as they were when I was that age.  I feel like I am seeing more youngins getting into trouble with drugs more than ever before.

Part of me wishes I had gone to a festival during that point in my life.  I have gone to many concerts and clubs.  I even attended the Warped Tour during that time.  I know I would have had a great time but I probably would have gotten too drunk at some point.  At the ripe age of 30, I drank very little and made it through all 3 days with only one anxiety attack (oh the joys of getting older).  I was able to enjoy the experience, and even more than that, I’ll remember it.

And maybe you’ll still find me at festivals in 30 years.  I’ll be part of the happy minority that knows you are never too old to have fun.

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