5 Ways to Finesse ACL Weekend Without the Wristband

Just because you don’t have ACL money doesn’t mean you can’t have a concert-packed, Instagram-worthy weekend. Kick the main-stage mayhem and inevitable dehydration to the curb and repeat after me—in the words of one of the greatest rappers of all time and this year’s premiere headliner, Jay-Z—I’m a hustler, baby.

Story By Henry Youtt

1. KGSR Live Morning Shows - $5

  Photo Courtesy of KGSR

Photo Courtesy of KGSR

Each year, local radio station KGSR hosts stacked in-house performances from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Friday and Saturday morning. (Coffee is welcome.) Pro tip: get there at least an hour early to secure your spot and to score a free breakfast taco, if you’re lucky.

2. KUTX Live! at the Four Seasons - $10

  Photo Courtesy of KUTX

Photo Courtesy of KUTX

Need an extra hour of sleep? KUTX, another Austin radio station, has you covered with their 9:30 a.m. lineup of selected festival acts. Unless your morning glow can help you pass as an infant, admission is going to run you ten dollars in cash, but on the bright side, breakfast tacos will be provided.

3. Official ACL Fest Late Night Shows - $10 - 40

  Photo Courtesy of Austin City Limits Music Festival

Photo Courtesy of Austin City Limits Music Festival

Dying to see just that one band? Catch one of ACL’s official late night shows at a fraction of the price of a wristband to see your fave featured artists—Run The Jewels, Spoon, Portugal. The Man—in an intimate, air-conditioned venue or, at the very least, not a field of grass.

4. HOPE Farmers Market + Live Music - Free

  Photo Courtesy of HOPE Farmers Market

Photo Courtesy of HOPE Farmers Market

Sweating in line for an hour just to pay ten dollars for kimchi fries at the festival? Say Chi’lan-NO to overpriced festival food and make your way to HOPE Farmers Market on Sunday for farm-fresh fare, local artists and live music. Basically, it’s the morp of Austin’s premier music festival.

5. Red Bull TV’s ACL Livestream - Free

  Photo Courtesy of Red Bull

Photo Courtesy of Red Bull

Worried about getting all the way to Zilker on time? Don’t even bother leaving the house! Thanks to Red Bull’s annual broadcast, you can stream performances from your favorite artists from multiple stages all at once—and actually see them. Did someone say “bedroom dance party”?