Summer Concert Survival Guide

As temperatures continue to rocket upwards of triple digits here in the Valley, the idea of going to an all-day concert at an outdoor venue sounds like an adventure in masochism.

Today, the Rockstar Mayhem Festival (featuring Disturbed, Godsmack, Megadeth, Machine Head, In Flames, and more) is going on at the Ashley Furniture HomeStore Pavilion. It's one of many big outdoor music festivals we'll see in Phoenix this summer, including the impending Warped Tour.

We'll be bringing you a review of the Rockstar Mayhem Festival in the morning, but in the meantime, we've assembled a handy survival guide (in the form of five tips) for concertgoers who'll find themselves under the unforgiving Phoenix sun for hours on end.

Bring what you can to the venue. The list of allowed items differs from venue to venue, but the Ashley Furniture HomeStore Pavilion lets concertgoers bring in the following: personal (non-professional) cameras, sun screen, seat cushions, blankets, small umbrellas, lawn chairs no higher than 9 inches, and one sealed bottle of water per patron (not to exceed 1.5 liters). You might not need all of the above, but at bare minimum, you should bring water and sun screen.

Bring ear plugs. Some people, especially metalheads, may think ear plugs are for pussies. We happen to think they're for people who'd like to continue hearing and enjoying music for years to come.

Keep your pockets as light as possible. You'll get through the gate a lot faster if you don't have to unload 50,000 things from your pockets. And the people behind you in line will appreciate it, too. Oh, and ditch that chain from your chain wallet before you get to the gate, because most venues won't let you in with it.

Bring a fresh T-shirt (or buy one at the show). Yes, you're going to sweat. A lot. This is why most guys lose their shirts at outdoor shows. But a lot of people (especially women, who can't remove their shirts in public without the possibility of being arrested) would prefer a change of garb to looking at jiggly, hairy man boobs all day.

Pace yourself. Especially if you're drinking beer at a 10-hour event. Beer + sun = sick and broke, especially if you're chugging $10 beer after $10 beer in 110 degrees. Besides, nobody wants to slip on a puddle of your puke.

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Niki D'Andrea has covered subjects including drug culture, women's basketball, pirate radio stations, Scottsdale staycations, and fine wine. She has worked at both New Times and Phoenix Magazine, and is now a freelancer.
Contact: Niki D'Andrea

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