The Louisville Waterfront Park is glorious, and the Forecastle Festival could not be placed at a more fitting venue. It's in the middle of July, however, and your actual survival may very well be at issue. If you're young enough, you can weather a three-day music event without restraint or inhibition. The rest of you, may benefit from the following, and you'll thank us on Monday:
Determine Your Priorities - there are those who rigidly structure their festival experience. They get the best spot on the lawn. They see exactly those bands they intend. They endure few surprises and suffer fewer disappointments. It takes a lot of work, and stifles the spontaneous. There aren't many who can handle a festival in this fashion. If you're hoping to see Sam Smith, Modest Mouse and My Morning Jacket, with any kind of view, in three successive days, there's no other way to do it.
But, there's another way to go. If you favor flexibility, there's another wholly exceptional experience to be had. You won't get the good lawn plot, and you won't get anywhere near the headliners, but you won't necessarily miss anything. Remain mobile and open minded. Have an idea who you want to see, and perhaps at least which day they're playing, then see if you're in a position to see their show when it starts. Or, simply enjoy whomever is playing wherever you happen to be. If you find yourself within reasonable viewing distance of Houndmouth, hangout for Cage the Elephant. What it costs you in mobility, you will more than make up for in fond memories. Plus, it your spot's good enough Sam Smith follows them.
Enjoy Sundry Pursuits - the better festivals have an ever increasing variety of periphery activities now, to accompany the music and maintain attendee interest. Forecastle 2015 has its significant share. How about a Bourbon bazaar? You're in Kentucky after all. The Forecastle Bourbon Lodge is a veritable headliner, featuring local food, distraction and, of course, signature regional booze.
Bourbon tastings abound, plus a variety of culinary and craft brew carts, vendors and kitchens. Art exhibits, intriguing markets, and Holy Molé Taco Truck. We apologize to readers we aren't wholly knowledgeable regarding Louisville area Mexican food, but you won't find a more cleverly named comida coach. Those of you who are perhaps not terribly versed on matters yourself, procuring tacos from a truck is one of life's true delights, and is not remotely as objectionable as your squeamish friends make it out.
There are late night options, even. Though a good night's sleep is more often the best way to approach a multi-day festival.