Monday, June 30, 2014

Summerfest's first weekend in the books

One thing that will always be a great past-time, and certainly one of my favorite things to do, at Summerfest (or any festival for that matter) is people watching. It usually starts with observing fashion, or lack there of. Some of the outfits and things people decide to wear are often quite questionable. Some examples... Scantily clad women.  Head to toe in a monotone color (often a neon). Wearing American flag pants when it's not July 4th, though why would you anyways. Then there are the couples who, for whatever reason, don't look right together. So you start to wonder how they met and then maybe make up a story for them. Always a good time. Fashion trends noticed of the teenagers this year are high-wasted pants/shorts and headbands for the gals and long sleeve button down shirts and loafers for the guys. The 80's have come back. The girls are looking like Pat Benatar and the guys remind me of the douchy, rich characters from the classic 80's movies like Some Kind of Wonderful. So far this year, the most epic of people watching was last Tuesday when Lady Gaga was playing. Oh my word! So many people dressed for the show and put on a show for us at the same time. We are talking about older ladies (grandma age) wearing long silver wigs and dresses. People dressed up as characters from Lady Gaga videos, like with Diet Coke cans in their hair. A couple of the best dressed came from guys though. One guy had makeup, wig, short shorts, and these high heels that had no heals. He was pretty much walking on his toes all night.  The other guy was a very tall, skinny guy with makeup, short shorts, fishnet stockings, and rocking six-inch stiletto heels. He's obviously worn them before. Here's a picture from Lady Gaga night...
Cheeky Fest Goers
Wednesday I saw Arctic Monkeys. Thursday was Kenny Wayne Shepherd. Friday I went to see Five Finger Death Punch. Three nights, three different genres of music. One of the many things I love about Summerfest. I've seen FFDP several times already and pretty much knew what to expect, an in your face heavy metal show. Judging by the expansive crowd, which reached back all the way to the concessions, everyone else was expecting the same thing. Well, to be completely honest, I was disappointed. Sure they played a solid setlist of their songs, including Under and Over It, Burn It Down, Never Enough, and The Bleeding, but singer Ivan Moody spent way too much time talking about what was happening at the next stage over (Atmosphere was killing it) and making comments about Lady Gaga. They could have played another song or two. As it was, they only played for just over an hour. Good show, but not long enough. Finished well before any of the other stages. My highlight was their cover of LL Cool J's Mama Said Knock You Out...pretty freakin' cool! Again, while I was slightly disappointed, you can't beat seeing a band like Five Finger Death Punch for the $18 daily admission fee. Maybe I'm just spoiled from seeing so many concerts. First World problems.

I picked up my brother at the airport on Saturday. He's been coming out the last couple of years to experience Summerfest with me. It's great to have him here. We always have a blast. We didn't go to Summerfest Saturday, choosing instead to relax at home. Though I did take him to Sugar Maple for a couple of tasty beverages. He's still learning about craft beer, but already knows that fresh, flavorful, local beer is by far and way better than any of that stuff brewed by the big guys.

We did go to Summerfest on Sunday. Boy, it was a hot one too. The weather has been so erratic. On Wednesday and Thursday it was nearly teeth-chattering cold. I wore jeans and a sweatshirt both nights. Friday was a little bit warmer. Sunday was melty. Once we arrived at the grounds, we headed over to the box office and picked up free, reserved, blue seat tickets for 38 Special. 38 Special is a band I enjoyed growing up and figured, why not. Turned out to be a fantastic show too! At 62 years young, these guys can still bring it. Hammering away on hits like Rockin' Into the Night, Caught Up In You, Back Where You Belong, and Hold On Loosely, the show was full of energy and great music. A great time!

Summerfest is closed today, but we'll be back at it on Tuesday to see Ed Kowalczyk, lead singer of the band Live. Probably stick around for Switchfoot? Who knows?  Good times lie ahead!

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