Did You Know? Austin City Limits Music Festival pumped more than $277 million into the Central Texas economy last year & attracted about 75,000 people per day over six days. (via)
Wooooooof TA! Austin City Limits music festival beat the crap out of me! Every year I go I hope it’ll be easier, but it never is. I love the music & the break from normal life – but it’s H O T in Texas and that heat can really beat you up.
This festival came right on the heels of the Vegas catastrophe, which you couldn’t help but feel heavy about. My friends & I did our best to not bring it up but that’s hard to do when there’s thousands of people stuffed in on top of each other at a concert. I think that’s how it’s going to be from now on for our generation. It’s hard to honestly say otherwise. We have to live in a place where we’re cautious of our surroundings and listen to our instincts, especially when we’re in large crowds. Unfortunately, that’s where we’re at in America. Boo, all because of those mother fuckers.
One adjustment I noticed this year, I’m not sure if it’s new or just something I’m more aware of, is the huge crane overlooking the festival with police on it. They had a birds eye view of the entire festival and you could see they had huge lenses to see everything happening on the ground. That was about my only piece of mind.
On the 2nd night as Wafiq and I were watching one of the shows, we heard a huge bang come from the other side of the festival. We told ourselves if we hear it again, we’ll leave. Then we heard it again. And again. There were police near us that also looked concerned, as did most of the people around us. To make a long story short, it was pyrographics at the stage on the other side of the festival. I’m thinking (and hoping) this part of live performances will have restrictions in the future. I don’t think it’s worth it to risk confusing a crowd. With our tensions a little higher than we’d like, Wafiq and I decided to leave early that night. Again, we’re at a place where you have to trust your gut on certain circumstances, call us dramatic but I’d rather be the dramatic one all day than the one standing there when/if something happens.
I constantly brag about the incredibly insightful active shooter training I did with our city Fire Marshall – I need to do a whole post on that because it was way more helpful than I imagined it could be.
OK! Did NOT mean for this to be an active shooter post so lets get back to the festival! HOLY SMOKES lets talk food because – the highlight was THE. FOOD. My favorite things of all time, Tostones. Tostones are mashed & fried plantains. I originally discovered & ate them like a mad person while I lived in the Dominican Republic where tostones are served like French fries. I got them from the food truck mmmpanadas. SO FREAKING GOOD.
Let’s move to the main event – the beef kababs. I can die happy. I’m not a kebab person & I’m not a big time beef person, BUT, there’s an exception for everyone. We ate these kebabs every single day. The last day we ordered several kebabs to-go. (Does anyone order to-go at a festival?!?!) We ate them the rest of the week and after dissecting the flavor, we think we can try to mimic the recipe… For anyone in Houston, they were from a restaurant called Peli Peli, which is also opening in Austin soon. Totally worth checking out you guys, I’m already planning a trip to Houston so I can investigate the entire restaurant menu. Sometimes food just speaks to you.
As for the music, we actually saw a ton of concerts this year. Jay Z was as amazing as you can imagine. Chance the Rapper was surprisingly wonderful. I had low expectations for some reason when it came to Chance the Rapper but was pleasantly surprised and very glad I decided to make it to his show. And I also saw Ice Cube which I loved because it had a lot of Fucks and partying happening. Sunday I watch ZHU, curve ball for me but ended up really happy with the performance. They brought out a saxophone which is pretty much a guarantee for me. We peaked in on the Gorillaz, but left a little early from their performance. It would’ve taken JLO to keep me on Sunday night – I was DONE.
Before I go, one note I have to make. Zilker Park is the location of the festival which happens to be a park that I frequent almost daily. Sometimes more than twice a day. I’ve never been so sad to see how badly people treat Earth. You guys, my heat ached! UGH, please don’t ever ever ever ever ever be that asshole that litters. We’re better than that. Small things like picking up your own garbage is what can make us all live in a lighter place. You’re never ever too cool to throw away your own trash, I swear on everything holy, you’re the cool person to pick up your garbage and take the time to find a trash can and throw it away. That is SEXY & HOT!
I could have gone on for so much longer but I’ll cut myself off for today! Festival time truly is like Austin’s Christmas. All the people packed in this beautiful city makes my heart happy, and proud to live here.
A few questions before I go, anyone eat at Peli Peli before, is it the same experience that we had at the festival? Second, have you ever littered?
Go out and be thoughtful!