You’ve probably heard us say “Brands are like people.” Well, it’s also true that people are brands! Here are 10 brands of people you’re guaranteed to meet at Summerfest this year. What’s your Summerfest brand?
You have the 11-day pass and Preferred Parking. You’re using all your vacation days on Summerfest, but that’s fine because you can’t afford to do anything for the rest of the year anyway. You know exactly who you’re going to see on what day and you know the routes between shows that pass by the good beer. You splurged on Section 2 for Future, Big Sean & Migos, but you’re sitting alone because the rest of your friends are cool with the lawn.
The One Who Sneaks Into BMO
You’ve got this down to a science. Get there early before they start checking tickets. You stand the whole time, partly so you can truly jam, but also so when the people whose seats you stole show up you can act like you totally have the seats next to them. When Security starts looking in your direction for too long, you tap your empty cup with your finger like you’re going to go get more beer but really you move to some empty seats in the next section. This year you lucked out and got to stay third row center the whole House of Pain show.
The Girl Who Lives in the Neighborhood
When you moved to the Third Ward you were so excited to live near Summerfest grounds. It didn’t occur to you at the time you wouldn’t be able to leave your parking garage for 2 weeks. You spend the whole year threatening to put your place on Airbnb and stay with your mom in Brookfield. Then they announce the line-up and you’re like, okay I’ll stay with mom next year because I’m not missing Tegan and Sara or Atmosphere or Joss Stone or Trombone Shorty and the headliners are all legendary. Plus you can see the fireworks from your rooftop.
The Guy Who Knows All the Bands
No, like you actually know them. You’re basically friends. You’ve seen every band back when they were playing dive bars and hung out with them before they were big. You mention this in every conversation and correct everyone’s knowledge on each band’s origin stories because you were there, man. Everyone sort of hates you. Nobody wants to go to Summerfest with you except once you did get Steve and Jesse onto OK Go’s tour bus so at least some of what you say may be legit. OK Go also sort of hates you.
The Girl Who Thinks It’s Coachella
You follow all the Insta models and Kardashian-adjacents, so you’re pretty sure you’ve got the festival thing nailed. You have a section of your closet for “festival wear” that includes distressed daisy dukes, flower crowns and fringe everything. You’re still breaking in your knee-high gladiator sandals, but they look so cute with your white crochet bell-sleeved baby doll dress you’re willing to pack extra band aids in your cross-body saddle bag. The only artist you’ve actually heard of is Pink, but you’re not seeing her because she sort of scares you.
The Guy Who Has His Spot
You go to Summerfest every year and you get the same spot every time. It’s your spot. Summerfest officials are practically on the verge of creating a RESERVED FOR YOU plaque for that spot. Inevitably you sleep in one day and there’s some guy in your spot when you get there. It turns out he knows OK Go so you hang out all night and you even make the exception to leave your spot when he offers you an extra Chili Peppers ticket. You follow each other on Soundcloud now and you’re going to the Dropkick Murphys/Rancid show together in August.
The Person Who Doesn’t Like Crowds
You hate large gatherings of people but this might be your last chance to see Dylan live. You’ve been meditating twice as long as usual every day for 2 weeks in anticipation of the anxiety the crowd will give you. The traffic is always horrible and for some reason the second you get off 794 you’re constantly dodging enormous, sweaty men wearing trashbag ponchos walking in the middle of the street. The only conversation you have all night is repeated mentions of how drunk you can’t believe some people are willing to be in public.
The Guy Who Wears His Headphones All Day
Yes, you’re aware that you’re at the world’s largest music festival and you’re wearing headphones. The thing is you’re not actually listening to other music while you’re at the shows (although you do put the new Kendrick album on while walking between acts) it’s just that you had a lot of ear infections as a kid and the scar tissue that built up makes your eardrums sensitive and you also really need to make sure you’re doing what you can to preserve your hearing. You can actually hear the people behind you going “why is he wearing headphones at a concert?” every. single. time. You also secretly hope it gives you an air of mystery.
The Girl Who Didn’t Exactly Know what Summerfest Was
You’re from Grafton so it’s not like you’ve never heard of Summerfest. Your parents went every year before you were born and you think your cousin saw No Doubt there in the 90s or something. You and your dance team are going so you can see Alessia Cara and the Chainsmokers and have no idea how they’re both in Milwaukee on the same day? Your parents are letting you take the bus down as a group as long as you’re home by midnight. You leave before the Chainsmokers encore and you’re on the bus by 10:30 so you can make curfew. You get home at 4am.
The Cool Parent
One of your favorite childhood memories is when your dad took you and your sister to see Soundgarten at Summerfest in 1994. Your daughter is 11 now so you’re going to take her and her two best friends, McKenzie and Bella, to see Tom Petty this year. You say it’s so they can experience a true rock legend, but really you’re hoping you can get a post-soccer carpool playlist going that isn’t exclusively songs by boys who used to be a part of One Direction (although you secretly love Harry Styles’ new album). Your new favorite adulthood memory is watching the three of them air guitar with full abandon to Refugee, but you also get uncomfortable every time Bella asks why it smells like a skunk.