Sunday, July 19, 2015

Sloss Fest 2015 Event Review

Hey guys! Hope everyone is recovering nicely from the weekend. Is it me or does July seem to fly by? I can't believe we only have ten days left this month! I'm trying to make the last part of summer count and take advantage of all the exciting things going on in Birmingham. I was so excited to attend the first-ever Sloss Fest this past Saturday. The event held at historic Sloss Furnaces, was a two-day music and art festival and let me just say it was AMAZING!

I was supposed to be out of town this weekend but when that got nixed at the 11th hour, I was sad about not going to Florida but a little relieved. I had already gone out of town last weekend and have several upcoming trips that I would rather save my money for. But what to do? A friend quickly reminded me that our own Birmingham, AL would be hosting a brand new music festival. I love music festivals and travel to them quite frequently so how could I pass up the chance to attend one right in my own backyard? I put on my flower halo (my trusty Festy Besty) and the comfiest dress I could find to head over to Sloss Furnaces.

What is Sloss Furnaces? Well, if you want to know the history, don't worry I took the above pic just for you. If you want more of a one sentence answer, it's an old, former furnace in the middle of downtown Birmingham, AL. Think it sounds a little is. So much so that legend says the furnace is haunted and it has one of the best Halloween themed attractions in the South by the name of Sloss Fright Furnace. But last time I checked it's July not October so back to the festival. I was pumped about a festival being right here in my hometown and was pretty amazed at the lineup.

We arrived a little after 6pm, it was really humid that day due to previous thunderstorms a few hours before but the atmosphere was super energetic. Also, this was the BEST dress ever for a music festival. It was comfortable and I loved the tie-dye in soft pink hues. I will definitely post about the entire outfit and other fashion/beauty tips for any music festival. It was crowded but not unbearable by any means, I think the event team did an excellent job of crowd control and having the three stages set in different locations made things easy to find and watch. I mean just look how relaxed the crowd looks.

After a bit, we got thirsty and needed to rehydrate so the first thing I saw was a juice bar amongst the line of food trucks. Local business Sprout and Pour were offering up some delicious juice options and I just had to try the Watermelon Lemonade. Let me just say it was heaven on a hot summer night. It was delicious! I will definitely be picking up some juices in the future and hope to see them at other events. I took a pic (blogger rules obviously) and then later realized that I had the wrong side facing (blogger fail) so of course I took another one. It was in the dark but hey I got the name in there this time!
Sprout and Pour Take 1

Sprout and Pour Take 2...seriously try this stuff!
It was fun walking around the old furnace with music in the background and beautiful once the sun began to set. It's funny how something like an old building can look so serene and lovely at night.

There was also plenty of lighting. If someone were to trip and fall, believe me I would be the victim. But not to worry there were lights all around and every spot of the event area was covered. It was really cool to see how they changed this place up to fit a music festival. Although I shouldn't be too surprised since this venue actually holds lots of weddings. This was the perfect ambiance for the night.
As I said earlier there were three stages aptly titled Blast, Steam and Shed (all furnace things ha-ha get it?). Blast and Steam seemed to be the bigger stages and Shed was literally in a Shed, it could have been bigger but that area was packed at the time we checked it out.
Blast Stage

Loving the neon pink d├ęcor
This can kind of provide you with a better glimpse of Shed, it had these pretty fountains in front and surrounded by a lot of really cool art vendors. I picked up two posters that I can not wait to add to my home! If you live in Bham, I would suggest looking at Yellowhammer Creative, they have some really cool vintage style posters and pictures along with specialty tanks and tees that remind you of landmarks and such from the city.
The Shed lit up

They also had iron pouring stations which went along with the theming of the location. That's right we had IRON POURING at a music festival. Getting pretty hardcore here.

Iron Pouring Action Shot
The night was perfect for a music festival, just look how clear the skies were. I think what makes music performances sometimes is the crowd. The crowd stayed hyped and energetic throughout all the performances and no one seemed to be getting out of hand (that I saw) just a really chill group.

I also liked how all three of the stages were close enough that you could make your acts on time but also enough space that if you needed a little break for food and rest, you could easily move away from the crowd.
Steam Stage
Birmingham has also welcomed lots of new local breweries the past few years and have an extensive lineup of homegrown brews. It was only fitting that they have their own "beer garden" showing off local favorites. I would highly suggest visiting several of the Ham's breweries exclusive to the state (my picks are Avondale and Good People). This was a fun touch to make the event even more "localized" and show attendees from out of state something new to try.

Craft Brew Garden
 After a few hours, my feet were hurting (one of my frequent festival going besties texted me and said if your feet aren't hurting then it wasn't a good festival) and I was pretty tired from the day so we decided to call it a night. I would have to say out of the bands we saw (Young the Giant, Cathedrals, Cage the Elephant and Modest Mouse were so good live) my favorite had to be Band of Horses, they were amazing! I loved Sunday's Lineup but I have to get up super early Monday morning and I'm trying to save money for other trips and concerts so I sadly had to opt out of day 2.

Yes, tickets were a little on the high side ($85) but it's a music festival with legit artists so what do you expect? If you live in Birmingham, I encourage you to experience all the exciting things this city has to offer! There is seriously something going on all the time. And if you are thinking of coming from out of state for this festival, I can not say enough good things about the event. It was run smoothly and efficiently and for a first year fest, I thought the team who put it together really hit it out of the park. Next year I hope they have the event starting on Friday instead of Saturday so I can attend both days, other than that I see this event growing and can't wait to see what's in store!

Happy Festival Season!



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