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DMNW on the road: Lollapalooza 2021 gave us our first taste of the new normal for festivals

After a year of uncertainty, four days of music from all genres with surprise guests and celebrity appearances at Lollapalooza 2021 brought us closer to what’s become the new normal for live music. The four-day extravaganza was held at Grant Park in Chicago Illinois between July 29 and August 1, and we were there to witness it all. See below for a breakdown of our festival experience.


Good lineups are always crucial for traveling to festivals. So who was worth the money this year? Miley Cyrus and Megan Thee Stallion definitely topped our list.

That saw Miley bring out Juicy J, The Kid Laroi, and plenty of other fan favorites throughout her performance. Megan Thee Stallion did not bring out anyone of note, but her performance stole the show regardless. She had one of the most high energy performances that we have ever witnessed, with a whole lot of dancing.

Over at the the Perry Stage (Lolla’s de facto EDM side stage), Vintage Culture played an up beat/jumpy set for all the dance music fans as well.


From one side of Lollapalooza to the other is around a one-mile walk, so needless to say we definitely got our steps in.

The stages varied in sizes and some were even facing each other. This year it felt like there were more art installations added to the festival as well, so the energy in the festival was felt from the second you walk in.

The sounds system at the stages were loud and clear — even if you are standing at the back of the pack, we were be able to hear our favorite artists singing every word.

Things to do

There are plenty of photo opportunities around Lollapalooza and tons of vendors throughout the festival. There were artist merch tents that sold artist merch, and a huge tent dedicated to Lollapalooza souvenirs as well.

If you get hungry at the festival, you can find some of your favorite food trucks at the festival with a variety of options. One of our favorite was Cupcake Vineyard, which sold wine in a plastic bottle, allowing festivalgoers to grab their drink and walk around the festival without having to worry about spillage.

Tips and Tricks

Unless you are in front row at the main stage, you are not going to see anything. There are big screens on the side of the stages so you can watch it through the screens, but don’t expect to see Miley Cyrus in real life unless you are on the railing.

Also, just like any festival, the weather cannot be controlled. Lollapalooza was split between two hot days and two cold days this year, and we saw a lot of people having to purchase jackets due to the sudden drop in temperature. That said, be sure to pack for all weather.

Worth noting as well: Wear a face mask even if you’re vaccinated. Even though the festival didn’t require you to wear a face mask if you are vaccinated, it’s never a bad idea to take extra precautions.

If you are staying around Chicago and don’t want to pay a small fortune for your Uber, either leave the festival before 8 p.m. (the festival ends at 10 p.m.) or hop on the train.


If you have never been to Lollapalooza before, go and experience it! It is truly an unique festival that fully showcases downtown Chicago. The city skyline view in the background of your favorite artists playing alone was worth the price of admission.

The lineup is also diverse every single year and it is more than just a music festival — it’s an adult playground. So put on those sneakers and bring a mask (just in case!), and we hope to see you at Lollapalooza 2022.


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Dance Music NW will notify you when there is breaking news in the Pacific Northwest nightlife industry.