As summer winds down and the days lounging by the pool become distant memories, Atlanta has one more adventure to offer — Music Midtown.
The annual music festival has been taking over Piedmont Park since its return from hiatus in 2011, bringing some of the biggest stars across several stages for the two-day event Sept. 16-17.
This year’s lineup continues that impressive feat, with artists and groups like Bruno Mars, Mumford & Sons, Future and Blink 182 offering a wide range of genres for fans to experience. With the addition of several hundred thousand people descending upon the big city, things can get a little hectic, so a solid game plan is a must. With that in mind, here are some tips to surviving Music Midtown 2017.
It goes without saying that any good plan requires a little prep work in order to run smoothly. With such a large amount of concertgoers in attendance, Music Midtown has several guidelines in place on their website. Some of the most important things to remember include:
- No backpacks. They do allow small bags but they are subject to search by security.
- No coolers of any kind.
- No strollers.
- No glass or metal containers.
- No chairs of any kind.
- No professional video or audio recording.
- No illegal substances of any kind.
You’re still free to take as many photos with your phone as you want. See a full list of prohibited and allowed items.
Since you’re there for the music, make sure to arrive as early as possible if you want the best view of the stages.
There are four places where the performers will be throughout the park, and the big headliners all go on later in the evening.
So if you’re interested in Bruno Mars or Mumford & Sons, try to get to their stages a good half hour or so before they’re set to go on. The Music Midtown organizers have also set up an easy-to-follow lineup guide. This website will be your best friend throughout the festival.
Remember, as with any outdoor adventures, hydration is key to having a good time. Avoid heatstroke and be sure to bring a plastic reusable water bottle, because there will be several stations around the park where you can refill it with fresh water.
Explore the area
It’s a simple fact that as humans, we tend to get hungry throughout the day. While there are food trucks throughout the venue, midtown Atlanta has a lot of quality restaurants to suit your needs if you need a break from the festivities. And let’s face it; we usually enjoy a little alcohol with our concerts as well. Luckily, almost every restaurant in midtown also offers a fine choice of drinks for those looking to imbibe, all within walking distance of Piedmont Park.
As its name suggests, The Nook on Piedmont Park has the great distinction of being located at the park, making it the best choice for those wanting to keep close to the action of Music Midtown. The menu offers lots of food options from appetizers to full meals. Unwind with a couple of drinks and take in the music as well.
The Nook on Piedmont Park
When: Open 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday and Sunday
Where: 1144 Piedmont Ave. NE
More info: 404-745-9222, www.thenookatlanta.com
If you’re looking for some lighter fare to curb your hunger, Henry’s Midtown Tavern offers a variety of bar food staples – chicken wings, hot dogs, burgers and several different types of tacos. If you enjoy a little kick, I personally recommend the corn salsa dog. They’re open until 1 a.m. on Saturdays and 11 p.m. on Sundays, so there’s plenty of time to enjoy some appetizers and drinks throughout the day.
Henry’s Midtown Tavern
What: Casual dining and bar
When: 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday
Where: 132 10th St. NE
More Info: 404-537-4477, www.henrysatl.com
MetroFresh is another great choice if you’re looking to get away from Piedmont Park for a few. It’s just a couple of minutes’ walk from the park and has a nice patio for relaxing and recharging with your fellow concertgoers. There is a menu of soups and sandwiches that change each day, so each trip can offer something new for you to experience. They also serve a Sunday brunch if you need a quick pick-me-up following Saturday’s shows.
What: Soups and sandwiches, breakfast
When: 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday
Where: 931 Monroe Drive NE
More info: 404-724-0151, www.metrofreshatl.com
Park Tavern is another spot that’s conveniently located in the park, near the southeastern corner. While it offers several different types of food, it leans more toward seafood, with an amazing sushi menu curated by the chef. The friendly atmosphere means you can sit back with some sashimi and some sake while enjoying the music. In years past the tavern has tended to fill up pretty quickly during Music Midtown, so make sure to get a good table while you can.
What: Tavern, sushi
When: 11:30 a.m. to midnight
Where: 500 10th St. NE
More info: www.parktavern.com
If jazz is your thing, Front Page News offers a New Orleans-inspired experience with an amazing outdoor area featuring views of midtown. If you’re with a large group, I highly recommend the Pineapple bayou fish bowl, a drink so epic it comes with four straws. If that’s too intense, the bar features an extensive list of local and domestic beers as well as a nice wine selection.
Front Page News
What: New Orleans-inspired tavern
When: 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday
Where: 1104 Crescent Ave. NE
More info: www.frontpagenews.com
Embrace the madness
Now that you have your Music Midtown game plan set and some awesome places to experience, the most important thing to remember is to have as much fun as possible the entire weekend. It’s only once a year that so many of music’s greatest talents come together, so take in all the awesomeness that Atlanta has to offer. It’s two days of music, community and fun that can create a lifetime worth of memories.