The inaugural Suburbia Music Festival at Oak Point Park and Nature Preserve in Plano, Texas is, among many things, a giant experiment. Live Nation took what I like to call a “book it, and they will come” approach, betting on the biggest names across a myriad of genres to lure music-hungry residents in North Texas.
Saturday, the turnout was commendable for bands like Run The Jewels, Alabma Shakes, Midlake and Reverend Horton Heat. If you’re planning on making you’re way out to the nature preserve Sunday afternoon, here are five tips for rockin’ the suburb.
1. Bring water. Suburbia Music Festival allows every festivarian to bring up to one liter of water and there is a refilling station up the hill by the JC Penny Backyard.
2. Bounce around. Because the Oak Point Park and Nature Preserve is enormous, it’s not difficult to find a great spot at any of the three stages. In turn, there’s not really a need for camping out in between sets. Explore the venue itself, which boasts a little bit of forestation and hills that make the space a natural amphitheater, as well as bands you may have never heard.
3. Enjoy the amenities. There’s plenty of fun stuff to do beyond watch music. You’ll find games such as toss-across, bocce ball and jumbo Jenga in the JC Penny backyard, a photobooth in the Strongbow lounge and wide open field if you happen to bring a frisbee.
4. If you’re bringing the kiddos, know the bands aren’t holding back. Especially at the Cedar Room stage, where most of the rap and hip-hop acts played Saturday, cuss words were aplenty, and alcohol and drug references were not edited just because it’s an all-ages event.
5. The Dos XX stage is not really a stage. It’s actually a lookout, where patrons can go to the second floor and see the nature preserve through viewfinders. I mistook it for the Prairie Stage Saturday, until we heard Midlake playing from beyond the trees.
Bonus: Don’t buy Third Eye Blind’s new album. The ’90s alt-rock pioneers played to an adoring crowd near sundown Saturday. The old songs were great for the nostalgia-inducing riffs, even though lead singer Stephan Jenkins couldn’t hit a note to save his reputation. He harped on the fact the band is not on tour, but in the studio finishing up a new album. They played two new songs, neither of which I would recommend.