Hangout Festivals
2012, 2013, 2014

Christine, our son Shaun, and I attended three Hangout Festivals, held each May in Gulf Shores, Alabama.  Shaun has attended earlier festivals too.  With the exception of the Rock Legends Cruise, these festivals have been the best concerts we have attended.  They are well prepared.  For instance, there are a fleet of busses that are constantly picking up riders at designated pickup locations and these busses deliver concertgoers right at the gates to the festival and promptly back to their pickup locations.  Food booths and beer concessions are plentiful (and the food is decent), water bottle refilling stations are free to use, souvenir vendors are available, and scores of palm trees are planted for shade.  Handicapped access is provided in shaded areas and even sit-down meals are available.  Of course, the sugar-white sand and beautiful May weather round out a great experience.

Here are a few pics that show what these concert locations look like.  Most of these pictures are thumbnails that, if clicked upon, will call up a larger image.  Here is a video I shot with my cell phone.  Blurry images is sunscreen on lens, lol.  
Christine and Shaun are sitting across a table from me... a table that looks out upon the smallest stage of the festival.  This is inside the Hangout restaurant itself.This panoramic photo is of the Western "Hangout" Stage.  We are probably two hundred yards away from the stage.  One of the VIP areas is to the left and it provides more shade, hot tubs, etc.

One year's poster showing the quality of the bands that play there.This is one of the interior stages.  As you can see, there is plenty of room for a large crowd even on the smaller stages.  Shaun took this from the Ferris Wheel..Taken from the Ferris Wheel and facing East, you can see the Chevy Stage (black rectangle on upper right) and the concession stands along the roadway.  There are two  humongous stages, one ateach end of the beach.

The back yard of the Pink Pony had the white tops to the left.  Around the corner to the right was the Chevy Stage.  A gazebo on the right was used for marriages... yes, marriages!From Left to Right:  Eric, Christine, and Flemming, one of Shaun's roommates.  You can get burned easily on the beach and shade was very welcome.  Public Enemy is playing the Boom Boom stage, I think.  This is one of the three interior (non beach) stages that are about a block off the Gulf of Mexico.

This is the "Letting Go" Stage.  It is the biggest stage of the inland stages.

Sadly, in 2014 the Festival added what they say is another 5,000 attendees.  I believe there were 40,000 attendees our first two years.  It seemed like another 15,000 attendees.  It was common to dig a hole in the sand and put the excavated sand at your back to make a couch of sorts, where you could sit.  With the larger crowd on 2014, there wasn't room for the crowd to move and countless folks would step over you, on your legs accidentally, or kick sand on you as they walked by.  Also, the audio on the Chevy stage was poor and we, sitting a good distance from the stage, couldn't tell when Jack Johnston started to play.  We aren't attending the 2015 Hangout Festival.