Get Planning for ACL 2014!

As I sat around the dinner table at a friend's house yesterday, we vented about the back-to-school stress that hovers over us like a dark cloud this time of year. As fall approaches, so do complicated schedules and to do lists, homework, projects, PTA committees, and weekends full of soccer games, commitments and the attempt to find just a few hours of down time. But as my mama friends and I rattled off our lists of events that will fill the next few months, one thing stood out like a bright ray of sunshine, like a mini-vacay, like a celebration in the near future: Austin City Limits!

It's coming up SO soon! But besides the general excitement about it swirling in the back of my head, I haven't taken any time at all to start thinking about the festival. Since it's still over a month away, it's really not too late to plan to take advantage of this awesome event here in our own hometown. After about six weeks of school is underway, won't ACL feel like a well-deserved moment of "me" time? (Yes!) So if you're like me and just now starting to think about this, here's my basic to do list for ACL Festival planning...

1. Buy tickets.
Did you know that weekend passes have been SOLD OUT for a while now? It's true. BUT the good news is that you can still get single day tickets for Friday or Sunday on either weekend. (Both Saturdays are sold out.) So get on it while you can! Check out ticket info and pricing here.

2. Coordinate with friends.
If you're like me and you want to plan the weekend with the ultimate festival buddy, it's time to invite your pals. (In fact, I'm going to get offline in a moment and call up my college bestie to see if I can talk her into joining me for a fun weekend of music and catching up.) But perhaps you want to go with a friend and order tickets together to ensure you can buy them for the same day. Perhaps you're planning to go with your whole Mom's Night Out group and want to coordinate babysitters together. No matter, it's good to start thinking and planning ahead if you're hoping to experience ACL with a friend.

3. Get a babysitter. 
If you're planning to take the kids to Austin Kiddie Limits, please by all means do it! In fact, on this blog we are going to walk you through all the steps to help you prepare for a great time if you bring the little ones along! (I promise, we'll do that for you.) But the Kiddie Limits stage does close early (4:30pm). So if you plan to take the kids home and jet back for the headlining acts at night, you're going to need someone to watch the kiddos. So, don't wait until all your favorite sitters are booked. Get on it now. Or start making your list of backups or friends you can call in for favors.

4. Study the schedule.
We still have a little time on this, right? But if you thought you'd see both Beck AND Outcast perform on Friday night only to learn that they are playing at the same time, that could be a big bummer. It's best to think way in advance about your priority lineup. Here's the full schedule.

5. Catch up on playlists.
Does your friend talk endlessly about how much she loves the Head and the Heart but you're still not sure what they sing? Was the last Interpol album you listened to "Turn on the Bright Lights" from 2002? No fear. There is a lot of time to catch up and do some listening. Sometimes it's fun to just go to a show not knowing any of the songs, but sometimes it's good to at least know if you like the band's sound ahead of time. We'll help you out on this here on the blog. Check back soon for playlists!

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