Eight tips for getting in, getting good food and drink, and getting out

Like any music festival, Outside Lands is what you make of it, and there’s no way anyone else will tell you how to manage your time watching music: either you already have a plan or you’re going to figure it out the way you do. But if you don’t know the terrain or haven’t been in a few years, let us offer you some tips so you don’t miss out on the good stuff.

Running between sets will be the name of the game during certain hours, especially if you have a broad taste in music and want to see, say, half of SZA’s set and half of Disclosure, or some of Phoebe Bridgers – they’re all scheduled against each other. on Friday.

But to get the most out of Outside Lands and any sums you’ve spent on tickets, here are some quick tips. Plus, get the Outside Lands app on your phone; that’s where you’ll find everything mapped.

1. Arrive early

Getting out onto the avenues is a bit of a hike unless you already live there, so keep that in mind especially on Friday when the crowds at the box office and gates will be thickest. If you want to be on stage at Twin Peaks to see Ashe at 3:45, you’ll need to leave your hotel or apartment by 2:00, so why not go earlier? Friday is a great time to get to know the terrain and see things like the Beer Lands and SOMA Tent before they overflow. (If last year was any indication, the SOMA dance tent is going to be a big draw, especially after everyone has had their molly on Saturday or Sunday.)

2. Use the city buses and trains (or Bike In)

The biggest craziness for Outside Lands attendees involves cars: trying to find an Uber in Sunset or Richmond after the show, or trying to park your own car in neighborhoods that have had 14 years to prepare for your arrival and turn it down. none of this is fun or easy. The quickest way out, by far, is to catch one of the buses that line Fulton Street towards the end of each night’s shows. You’ll need to find the front of the line, somewhere around 25th Avenue, because the buses will fill and depart in order. The other option is to walk a few blocks from the south side of the park, exiting onto Lincoln Way and heading to Judah and 34th Ave. to catch an incoming N Line Muni train. The further you go towards the ocean, the higher the chances of getting a place on the train; they are likely to fill up the further you go towards the park’s busiest exits.

This year’s map

3. Dress warm, soak up the sun, and plan for chilly nights

The weather is likely to be the same each of the three days this week, with fog in the morning and evening, but nice, breezy sunshine in the late afternoon and evening. The high for each day is around 65, but in the park that could be a few degrees lower, and at sunset it gets very wet and cold. You can always see the rookies, usually teenagers, chattering their teeth and shaking during the last set of the night in their skimpy outfits because they didn’t listen to their parents and didn’t bring a cape.

4. Wear comfortable shoes that do not interest you

The footprint of this festival is huge and it gets very dusty. You don’t have to wear your ultra-white sneakers, and people will just step on them anyway. You’ll be walking many miles before this festival is over, unless you plan to hole up on the main stage and never leave, which would be weird. So dress your feet accordingly.

photo cCourtesy of Alive Coverage via Grandstand Media

5. Cocktails before beer, or just stick with the weed

Festivals earn a lot from drinking, and you’ll see how with prices. Bars in the VIP areas and along the lawns will be charging an arm and a leg for a small vodka soda throughout the weekend, and the only “real” cocktails to be found are in the specific booths at the brand (Bulleit, Ketel One, Bacardi, Gray Whale Gin, and Don Julio are doing set-ups), or there are prepared drinks on tap at Cocktail Magic, the bar area at the center of it all, tucked away in the woods halfway between the two. main stages (Lands End and twin peaks). Those drinks are usually pretty good, priced around $16 or $18, and the best ones sell out, and the lines here get crazy after 6 p.m. then stick to the beer at whatever concession has the shortest line on your way to wherever you’re going. You can also have full glasses of wine at Wine Lands, or craft beers at Beer Lands, for a premium. In Grass Lands, since last year, you will also be able to buy and consume cannabis products, so there is also that, and this year they have DJs there.

6. There’s a new Toyota tent with ‘intimate’ shows

the Toyota music room – in the wooded area between Beer Lands and Cocktail Magic – looks like a mini car show situation, advertising Toyota vehicles and allowing passers-by to “take an aura portrait to capture its light energy” and “customize an Arm Candy bracelet and take a serigraph”. duffel bag”. There’s also a small stage there with its own lineup at daily times, and probably the ability to see fairly small acoustic sets – Friday includes two artists who play the larger stages earlier in the day, the New Zealanders The Beths and Bay Area.-bred artist ODIE.

7. Do not fall asleep with food

I know, maybe you’re high and don’t have time to eat. Also, sometimes it’s hard to eat standing up or running between stages and you can worry about food later. But this is another reason to get there early, at least one or two of the days, when there are no lines and when there’s time to enjoy a few meals before the acts you really want to see start.

This is a festival that has always prided itself on having a very lively and very Bay Area food lineup, and there is plenty to try. Oakland’s super popular Cambodian restaurant, Nyum Bai, will serve Kampot fried chicken and Khmer noodles; Fable The Castro will serve thick 1/2-pound double cheeseburgers with house fries and macaroni and cheese croquettes near the Panhandle stage; Koja Kitchen will be serving up great food for nearby stoners with their Kamakaze Fries with Korean BBQ Beef; Mister Jiu spin-off Mamahuhu will be on the polo field serving up a sweet and spicy chicken sandwich, Chinese-American sweet and sour chicken and mapo tofu fries; Media Noche will also be doing its Cubans at the Polo Field; East Bay burger pop-up shop Smish Smash will be making smashburgers nearby; the new Lower Haight location Otra will be available for chicken tinga taquitos and spicy kanpachi ceviche, also near the Lands End stage; and for pizza options, you have Mozzeria, Pink Onion Pizza, Escape From New York and, in VIP, A16.

8. Let the weather cool down, but the latest songs are for suckers

I may be showing my age here, but it sucks to be part of the herd of cattle trying to escape the festival gates after everything is completely over, and the last few acts have done their last pre-scheduled songs and encores. If you can walk away, it would be smart to do so. Kids can fight for those buses.

And when it comes to strategizing, take some time to kick back this weekend and enjoy some music! A plethora of options isn’t always good, and in the time it takes to get from the front of the Twin Peaks stage to the Sutro stage, you might miss out on several good songs, so make sure it’s worth your while.

top image CCourtesy of Alive Coverage via Grandstand Media

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