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How to Survive Pitchfork 2016

Dos, don’ts, and pro tips for anyone heading to Union Park this weekend.

Be not wet! Pack a poncho this Pitchfork.   Photo: Max Herman

Pitchfork is this weekend. By now, you know the drill. It will probably rain. Your phone will probably die. Someone’s favorite band will probably no-show.

To ease the sting of these inevitable hiccups, steel yourself against the avoidable ones. Everything you need to know, below.

Where is Pitchfork?

Union Park, 1501 W. Randolph. Gates are at Ashland and Maypole.

When is Pitchfork?

Gates open Friday at 3 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at noon.

Can I still get tickets?

Yep, for $65 a day or $165 for the weekend, right here.

How should I get there?

The Train: The pink and green lines run to/from at Ashland and Lake until 1 a.m. each night.

The bus: Take the #9 Ashland north or south or the #20 Madison east or west—all night long.

A Bike: Pitchfork sets up a bunch of crowd-control barricades for bike parking at the southeast corner of Ashland and Lake. There’s also myriad bike-share docks around the park.

A Cab: First-time Lyft users get a $50 ride credit with promo code PITCHFORK. To avoid traffic, get within a half-mile of the festival and walk.

Your own car: Park at your own risk.

Bring this stuff to Pitchfork, if you like:

  • A backpack, satchel, or fanny pack
  • Two sealed bottles of water (refillable at water stations)
  • Non-professional cameras (no detachable lenses)
  • Hats and sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Cigarettes
  • Your kids, for free! (If they’re younger than 10)
  • Folding chairs (no lounge chairs)

Don’t bring any of this stuff to Pitchfork:

  • A tent
  • Flags
  • Professional cameras (nothing with detachable lenses)
  • Video or audio recorders (your phone is fine)
  • Lounge chairs
  • An instrument
  • Weapons
  • Pets
  • Food
  • Drinks (other than your sealed bottles of water)
  • Drugs
  • Selfie sticks

Will there be lockers?

Yes, for $20 a day or $50 for the weekend. Reserve one here.

What about the lost and found?

Lost stuff will be kept in the will call trailer on Ashland for a week after the festival.

Pro tips

  • Take a screenshot of the schedule and set it as your phone’s lock screen; data will clog.
  • Bring two sealed bottles of water, drink them, then fill ’em up at a water station.
  • Beer sales end at 9:30 p.m.
  • Don’t try and jump between too many overlapping sets—you’ll just end up with crappy visibility.
  • Prepare for rain: Bring a poncho/shell and Ziploc bag for your phone, and don’t wear jeans.
  • On that note, set a meeting place with your friends. It’s kindergarteny, but wildly effective.
  • Bring your own TP; the porta-stash won’t last.
  • Hit the ATM before you get inside.
  • Follow us on Twitter: @carrieschedler, @ChicagoMag, @elly33, @JHardberger, @mattypollock.

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