Get Ready for ACL Festival 2018, Parents: Top Tips

We are so lucky in this town: we have the coolest music festival in the country. In just a few short days, tens of thousands of people from all over the world will converge upon Austin (and if you’re cranky about that because of traffic, I’m sorry). If you’re anything like me, the idea of taking kids to a giant festival may sound intimidating. And it can be, if you’re not familiar with the ins and outs of the event. LiveMom to the rescue! We have some tips that will help you navigate ACL with kids – or, if you have a chance, to get away and enjoy it for yourselves or with friends. Kids 10 and under get in free, so take advantage of that wonderful gift of musical education from the Austin Parks Foundation.

1)  WHERE TO ENTER

If you’re bringing your kids with you, the first thing you need to know is that there is a family friendly entrance. It’s directly to the right of the Barton Springs East Entrance, so bring your family through the entrance off Barton Springs Road to quickly enter the shaded Austin Kiddie Limits location until 7 PM each night. Or, if you prefer a different entrance, look for stroller-friendly family lanes at each of the main gates.

2)  TAG YOUR KIDS

Before you do anything else, head straight to Tag-A-Kid upon entry for an RFID tag that will help you reunite with your kids quickly. It’s a big place, and this is an extra “just-in-case” safeguard.

Kiddie limits

3)  DON’T FORGET THESE ITEMS

Lotion sunscreen (aerosol is prohibited), sunglasses, empty water bottles (fill up at the Camelbak hydration stations), and hearing protection. For all kids, headphones are ideal; the music is very loud and there are several stages with sound coming from all directions. If you forget them, ear plugs are usually available at the main information booth between the two entrances.

4)  GO CASHLESS: HANDS FREE!

When you activate your wristband, register your band to pay for any food and other items at the festival with a touch of your wrist. It’s much easier than carrying a wallet around. If you have kids with you, you’re going to need your hands to be free, anyway.

 5)  PRECAUTIONS

Write your phone number on your child’s arm in Sharpie in case they get separated from you. And it’s a great idea to have your emergency contact information on the lock screen of your phone.

6)  HOW TO GET THERE

Last year, I took Lyft to the festival, and it dropped me off right by Stephen F. Austin High School. Other options include bikes and the free shuttle from Republic Square Park downtown, and any of those work great. Don’t try to park in one of the nearby neighborhoods, or you’re likely to be pretty frustrated.

2018 ACL tips

What are you allowed to bring in, and what is prohibited? Check out the list here. Adhere, and have fun!

ALLOWED*

  • Bags will be restricted to small purses, totes and drawstring bags only. Bag size may not exceed 14” x 11” x 5” (35cm x 28cm x 12cm), or 30 linear inches (75cm) in total, and must have no more than one singular pocket or opening. Backpacks and bags with multiple pockets are prohibited. Hydration packs are allowed but must be emptied of all liquid and have no more than two pockets in addition to the one holding the water reservoir.
  • Binoculars
  • Blankets, Sheets, Towels
  • Strollers
  • Cameras (basic point and shoot consumer-grade cameras) without detachable lenses and other accessories (monopods, selfie sticks, tripods, GoPro mounts, and other attachments are not allowed)
  • GoPro cameras without accessories
  • Portable/collapsible chair (Individual seat only; no double wide or connecting chairs)
  • Sunscreen lotion (no aerosol containers)
  • Bug Repellant (no aerosol containers)
  • Empty hydration packs (smaller than 18 L)
  • Empty Water bottles (plastic or aluminum). For CamelBak type water bottle the max size is 36 oz
  • Totems, rage sticks and flags under 12 ft. tall are allowed for way-finding among friends. Items that are deemed by Festival organizers to be unsafe, inappropriate, offensive or are being used for purposes other than intended are prohibited and may be confiscated on site
  • Prescription Medicine Requirements:
    • Anyone needing prescription medicine at the festival must present the pharmacy-labeled container which states the prescription, dosage, and patient name to our medical staff at each entrance gate. Patrons are only allowed a sufficient supply of the prescribed medication for that day.
    • Medicines needing to be inhaled or smoked are prohibited unless in a prescribed inhaler.
    • Over the counter medications are allowed in a sufficient supply for the day. Bottle contents will be verified by medical personnel at the entry gates.

PROHIBITED*

  • Bags will be restricted to small purses, totes and drawstring bags only. Bag size may not exceed 14” x 11” x 5” (35cm x 28cm x 12cm), or 30 linear inches (75cm) in total, and must have no more than one singular pocket or opening. Backpacks and bags with multiple pockets are prohibited. Hydration packs are allowed but must be emptied of all liquid and have no more than two pockets in addition to the one holding the water reservoir.
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  • E-Cigs or Vaping devices
  • Liquids
  • Aerosol containers (including sunscreen and personal beauty products)
  • Any and all professional audio recording equipment
  • Any and all professional video equipment – no video recording will be allowed
    • Professional cameras (any camera with the option to detach a lens)
    • Any and all camera accessories, such as selfie sticks, tripods, monopods, go pro mounts and attachments, detachable lenses, or other commercial equipment
  • Drones or any other remote flying device
  • Frisbees
  • Camping or Tent setups. Includes camping umbrellas, tents and cordoning off your chairs with tape/rope
  • Coolers of any kind (exceptions may be made for medical use)
  • Framed backpacks
  • Hammocks
  • Glass containers of any kind
  • Firearms, explosives, and weapons of any kind (including pocket knives, pepper spray, fireworks, etc)
  • Illegal and Illicit substances of any kind
  • Drugs or drug paraphernalia
  • Outside food or beverage (including alcohol)
  • Umbrellas
  • Professional-grade radios or walkie-talkies
  • Pets (except service animals)
  • Skateboards, scooters, bicycles, wagons, carts (including red wagons) or any personal motorized vehicles
  • Tents, canopies, or shade structures of any kind
  • Unauthorized/unlicensed vendors are not allowed. No unauthorized solicitation and materials including handbills, flyers, stickers, beach balls, give-aways, samples, etc.
  • Large chains or spiked jewelry
  • Bicycles inside the festival grounds (free parking is available near festival entrance)
  • No Inflatable furniture (rafts, chairs, etc.)

*SUBJECT TO CHANGE

 

Weekend 1: October 5-7, 2018 
Weekend 2: October 12-14, 2018

The festival is open from 11AM-10PM each day.

Please note: There is no smoking of any kind in Zilker Park.

no smoking ACL 2018

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