With just over a month until Lollapalooza descends on Chicago for four performance-packed days from August 3-6, 2017, it’s high time to kick into decision-making mode. Whether seasoned attendee or festival newbie, nuances abound—from what to wear, where to relax, and more. So while some choices are a matter of taste (and difficulty—how can you not give it up for Chance in his hometown….while also seeing your other preferred headliners?), the team at Lollapalooza is here to guide you through some weekend basics.
Nothing squashes a concert vibe quicker (OK, some things do) than a furrowed brow squinting over a (welcome) summer sun; accordingly, a set of lithe lenses is essential. Boasting 100 percent UV protection, consider Ray-Ban’s Classic Aviators, 58mm as extra ocular insurance—and, with scratch-resistant lenses, your style risks are mitigated, too (let’s be honest: they’re going to take a tumble or two). Bloomingdale’s, 900 N. Michigan Ave., 312-440-4460
Suspending hope that this isn’t a self-dooming prophecy, fingers crossed for clear skies over the weekend. But there’s a fine line between a healthy dose of Vitamin D and overdoing it; enter VIP access: with shaded lounge seating, cover abounds under which you can refresh, recharge, and combat any energy drain—be it from the rays or inclement elements (but let’s not think like that). And with on-site locker services to keep your belongings safe, no reason to rest with one eye open.
An iconic entry from the swoosh portfolio, the Nike Cortez is classic-but-contemporary festival-wear at its finest: the red, white, and blue color scheme is unabashedly summer, while the slim silhouette extends its pairing versatility to joggers, shorts, or your trendy trouser of choice. A leather upper and cushioned EVA midsole means it’s durable enough for traversing Grant Park—and stylish enough for the after parties. Available in men’s (pictured) & women’s; Nike Chicago, 669 N. Michigan Ave., 312-642-6363
Four days is, in theory, an endless, marathon stretch—it’s almost an entire work week! But time is of the essence, especially when confounding variables arise (you dawdle over the perfect pump-up playlist; etc.). Available with VIP access, a dedicated entrance of Balbo Avenue affords more time and latitude to enter and exit the festival with ease, meaning you maximize the amount of acts you work into your schedule. And while you can’t possibly catch all the talent at once, golf cart shuttle transportation from the north and south end of Grant Park lets you double dip as much as possible.
While there’s no shortage of locales to hit up, we humbly submit luxe Loop resto Steadfast to the canon of cool-kid hangouts. Anchoring the Kimpton Gray Hotel, the upscale concept by The Fifty/50 Restaurant Group is sufficiently buzzy for a pre-festival gathering, while sophisticatedly-subdued enough to serve as an after-hours wind-down. Because let’s face it: a damn good baked Alaska is the perfect encore to any show. 120 W. Monroe St., 312-801-8899
PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY BLOOMINGDALE'S (RAY-BAN); BY MACLAY HERIOT FOR LOLLAPALOOZA (SHADE); COURTESY NIKE; BY ROGER HO FOR LOLLAPALOOZA (CROWD); BY EMILY ANDREWS (STEADFAST); BY CHARLES REAGAN HACKLEMAN FOR LOLLAPALOOZA (HOMEPAGE PHOTO)