Headed up to New York tonight? We are too*. One of the east coast’s few outdoor music fests is descending on Randall’s Island this weekend for two days of music, food, and the ferry rides that get you there — drunk, high, or sober. With acts ranging from Diplo to Devendra Banhart, Governor’s Ball’s got something for all music fans, whether your festival attire reeks of Axe or Native American cultural appropriation. With one and two day passes still available on Stubhub, let Street help you navigate your weekend like a Bolt Bus through the Lincoln tunnel.
How to get there
Take the Bolt or Megabus up to New York as soon as you get out of work/class, because rush hour is going to be a doozy. Tickets for the Philly shuttle (which promises 2+ hours of music and drinking, plus a beeline to Gov’s Ball) are, predictably, sold out. Better luck next year!
Where to stay
With your friend who is interning in New York. Don’t try to tell us you don’t have one.
How to get there, Part II: Randall’s Island edition
Gov’s Ball has chartered ferries from Manhattan to Randall’s Island, and like the Philly VIP lounge-on-wheels, there’s a full bar and pumping music. Hot temps, full bar, and a rocking boat? Sign us up! The boats depart from 35th and FDR drive throughout the day. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online.
For those of you on a tighter budget/prefer to BYO, there’s always public transit. The X80 bus goes from 125th and Lexington (a stop on 4, 5, and 6 trains) directly to the festival entrance. Gov’s Ball is “…working closely with the MTA to ensure that an appropriate number of buses are added for show days and that lines are kept to an absolute minimum”, so you can expect a huge clusterfuck.
What to eat
You’re ridiculously spoiled this year at Gov’s Ball in terms of dining options – and when we say dining, we mean dining. This is no cotton candy and donuts affair. We’re especially looking forward to cooling down with some Coolhaus ice cream sandwiches (flavors include lemon ice cream on ginger cookies and olive oil rosemary ice cream on brioche cookies) and chowing down on barbeque from Hill Country (who boast the best BBQ sauce outside of Texas, according to Rick Perry). But with fare ranging from award-winning lobster rolls (Luke’s) to Asian hot dogs (Asia Dog), you can’t go wrong.
Who not to miss
With no overlapping sets, your only excuse for missing any of the acts is eating lobster rolls. But these sets are extra special.
Fiona Apple — Apple’s first album in seven years just dropped, and it’s getting phenomenal reviews. It’s also her first major performance in New York in nearly a decade – you don’t want to miss a rare chance to see the living legend perform some bona fide new material. Plus, it should be a nice respite from dancing your muddy boots off.
Devendra Banhart — Another rare bird when it comes to touring, Banhart doesn’t seem to be getting much press for his upcoming Gov’s Ball appearance. Show the folk artist some love and bask in the beautiful sounds of his unique brand of Latin American freak folk.
Beck — Whether you’re a devotee or not, you can’t deny Beck’s contributions to indie music since the early 90s. He probably won’t play “Loser”, but he probably will break out those patented dance moves. He’s headlining Gov’s Ball with the final Sunday night performance, so pace yourself throughout the weekend.
What else to do
Beer Pong – We’re a little suspicious about the hygiene of beer pong tables meant to serve an entire island for two days, but if you’re not in a state to care, Gov’s Ball has set up the games for your pleasure.
Silent Disco – If Major Lazer and Passion Pit don’t satiate your rabid electro hunger, there’s an ongoing silent disco that you can enter at any time throughout the fest. Wireless headphones are provided for free, so there’s equal opportunity to dance or to watch people dance without musical accompaniment (highly recommended).
Photobooth and Video Booth – Because you want to remember the friends you made at Gov’s Ball forever, right? And to one day show your grandchildren who their grandfather probably was.
We’ll see you there! For more info, check out governorsballmusicfestival.com