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Summer Music Festivals: What To Eat and Drink

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Summer isn’t just about backyard barbecues and picnics in the park.


There are plenty of great live music festivals across the country that provide a great excuse for a vacation (or a staycation if you are lucky enough to live in one of the areas playing host to an event). Of course, you’ll need to eat and drink when heading to these festivals, and why not enjoy some of the local fare when you’re heading in to town to catch the tunes.

Chicago: Pitchfork and Lollapalooza


The Windy City plays host to two of the summer’s biggest Music Festivals. First up, it’s the Pitchfork Music Fest, which happens at Union Park on July 13th to the 15th and features artists like Feist and Vampire Weekend. After that, Lollapalooza comes to town on August 3 through the 5 and takes over Grant Park with marquee acts like the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Neither festival lets you bring in any food or drink – boo- but thankfully there are plenty of options for food and beverage if you’re going to hit up Chi-town for the shindigs. Try visiting Goose Island Brewers if you like beer, they offer tours and samples on a regular basis. To save money after paying for that overpriced festival food, try ethnic neighborhoods like Devon Avenue which has killer Indian and Argyle street which is the go-to zone for top-notch Asian fare.

chicago style deep-dish pizza

If you can't get to Chi-town, make some of Chicago's finest foods yourself:

Massachusetts: Life is Good Music Festival


If the thought of standing outside in 100 degree weather to catch your favorite acts during the summer is too much to bear, there are festivals that stretch into September, letting you rock out without passing out from the heat. The Life Is Good Festival takes place on September 22nd and 23rd in Canton, Massachusetts and features big name acts like the Dave Matthews Band. Like the rest of the major fests, you can’t bring food in, but you’re a short distance from Boston so take a few extra days and check out the city’s culinary scene. It will still be warm enough to hang out at one of the city’s many harbor-side restaurants and enjoy some sea-centric fare, or you can take a tour of the Sam Adams Brewery to see how some of your favorite labels are made.

boston cream pie

Life can be good everywhere. So if you can't make the show bring a little Boston to your own backyard:

San Francisco: Outside Lands


Outside Lands brings acts like Beck, Bloc Party and Santigold to the Golden Gate Park from August 10th through the 12th. The only thing that is more exciting than the headliners are the views of the Bay. While the organizers won’t allow you to bring booze in, there is plenty of beer and wine served on the premises, and there better be since you are in the heart of American Wine Country. The good news is that you can bring food in. Since the festival lasts from noon to 10 PM each day, you’ll want to stock up on picnic fare. Your one stop shop for all the snack you’ll need is the Ferry Building, which plays host to a farmers market and has plenty of picnic-friendly goods that you can pack in your basket.

crab bites

Here are some San Fran treats that are a show of their own:
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