Love it or (more likely) hate it, Lollapalooza is back! After a hiatus year, the four-day fest is happening in Grant Park, July 29 to August 1. Gates open at 11 a.m. daily, and the music ends around 10 p.m. It’ll be held at full capacity — expect about 400,000 attendees and 170 musical performances.

The COVID of it all

Lolla 2021 attendees will be required to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test result from within the previous 24 hours. Event reps declined to comment on how exactly they’ll verify the vaccinated, but Northwestern epidemiologist Mercedes Carnethon says it ultimately doesn’t matter because there’s no way to ensure the coronavirus won’t be spread. Centers for Disease Control vaccination cards can be forged, forehead thermometers aren’t reliable in the heat, and “Do Not Enter If You Have the Following Symptoms” signs are easy to ignore — besides, young people are less likely to be symptomatic. Carnethon says not to be surprised if cases bump up here in mid-August.

Music worth the sunstroke

New(ish) acts you’ll fall in love with Omar Apollo; Flo Milli; Slowthai; Rico Nasty; Boy Pablo
Artists who will get you in your feelings Brittany Howard; Orville Peck; JPEGMafia; LP; Whitney; Hinds
Can’t-miss showstoppers Megan Thee Stallion; Tyler, the Creator; Miley Cyrus; Kim Petras; Kaytranada; Young Thug
Bands that make you say “Oh yeah, them” Foo Fighters; Limp Bizkit; Jimmy Eat World; Modest Mouse; Band of Horses
Gen Z-palooza Post Malone; Brockhampton; Playboi Carti; Lauv; Jack Harlow; Gus Dapperton
Your chance to scream-sing to “Don’t Stop Believin’ ” live Journey

What else you should know

Lines to enter Lollapalooza are always brutal, but with COVID-era verifications at the gates, expect extra-long queues this year. Arrive early so you don’t miss your favorite act (it’s Limp Bizkit, obviously).
Early attendance means longer days means more time in the sun. Stay hydrated! Lollapalooza permits attendees to bring in unopened plastic or aluminum water bottles and empty reusable ones for the free filling stations.
Per the event’s website, by attending the fest, “you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19.” Translation: Good God, please get vaccinated.