Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lollapalooza Love Not Dampened By Downpour 8/7/09


Last weekend, at a small fire circle in a friend's back yard, a girl ran up to me and exclaimed, "I have to meet you. What's your name?" When I told her, and asked why, she replied,

"I'm Amber and my boyfriend and I see you guys every year at Lollapalooza. I feel like we know you. We love to see how much the kids have grown and always end up sitting near you guys. This year we didn't see you till the 3rd day and we were saying, hey.......where's the family?!"
This year marked the 4th annual Lollapalooza held in Grant Park, Chicago. And the honeymoon's not over yet. Throngs of people flocked to the grounds for another sold out year. And we were among them.

The kids are in a Track E magnet school, and the first day always falls the Monday after Lolla. So, Lollapalooza marks the end of summer, a last hoorah before the kids don their subdued navy blue and crack the books. We always make the most of it.For years, Dug was called by multiple networks and music industry heavy hitters, all asking him to work Lollapalooza, and every year he's turned them down to go with the family. It's our end of summer mini vacation without leaving town, and a chance to see a plethora of our favorite bands.

We got there at 1pm to see Zap Mama.
Then we encamped in the kids area for
Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, Zach Gill (from ALO), Perry Farrell and Lunch Money. Even heavy Friday rains didn't keep the fans away.
When the littles complained, we told the kids that neither of them were wicked witches in mortal danger of melting. Then we huddled under plastic ponchos and rocked out anyway.

Perry Farrell performed a couple unlikely duets with LeAnn Rimes, which we had front row center for. Afterwards, Perry signed the kids' Lollapalooza program. He even signed an apple for someone!
We stuck it out in torrential downpours till the daily kids lottery. Every child gets one free lottery ticket, but you must be present to win. Sagie's name got called for a First Act Band in a Bucket and Dugan got a limited edition Lollapalooza harmonica.

Sage made use of the punk hair stylists
and we all spent the worst of the rains huddled under the nice, dry, Rock and Roll Petting Zoo tent. Dug almost mastered the beginning of Smoke on the Water on guitar, and the kids enjoyed trying out drums, guitar, bass and vocals in the microphone. We closed out the Kidzapalooza area with a wet Remo drum circle.

Then we were off, into the sodden masses, to see The Decemberists and Depeche Mode. The festival grounds were a mud pit, but the rains eased off and we enjoyed a cool, dry evening sitting on our tarp, neat sheet and ponchos.

Depeche Mode put on an excellent show, making us all glad we'd stuck it out till the end. The screen graphics and light show were fantastic, and the band is still tight.
Both kids enjoyed dancing, hooping, and putting on gymnastic-glow stick shows for everyone in our vicinity. We were all elated to shed our plastic outerwear.

Then we headed home to cure the dreaded "Fest Foot" with hot baths and showersand get a good night's sleep, so we could get up and do it all over again.....twice.


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