Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images Nine days after the deadly tornado that touched…
- Posted on Aug 4th 2012 5:58PM by Dan Reilly
Theo Wargo, Getty Images
As I type this, it's raining hard, with a good deal of thunder and lightning. The wind has picked up and from outside my hotel, which is directly across the street from the park, you can't even see the skyline anymore.
I checked the weather earlier today, and it said a 30% chance of storms starting around 7PM. Then, around 2:45PM, workers started handing out garbage bags in the media tent, where I was waiting to do an interview with Milo Greene (whose manager kindly offered shelter for me at their hotel). By 3, people were clamoring about the weather being really bad, and soon. By 3:05, another media member said he heard an event worker saying everything was getting shut down. By 3:10, it was official. Word was that we had to leave the park, and those who couldn't find their own shelter were being directed to an underground parking garage.
After talking to some other media friends, we left and thankfully I was able to easily get to my hotel while more and more emergency vehicles made their way to the park. Hundreds of people, many of whom weren't staying here, also followed, with many heading immediately to the bar. It'll be a banner afternoon for the staff at Kitty O'Shea's pub, to say the least.
The festival is still supposed to happen later this evening, when the weather is allegedly supposed to pass, but only if safety is guaranteed for the 100,000 or so attendees. The band fun. and Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea just tweeted that they're still going to perform. If that happens, the fields are going to be atrociously wet.
Still, most of the people who were stranded in the hotel lobby or underneath the awning outside seemed in good spirits. Sure, lots of them worried that they wasted their money if things don't resume later tonight, but a representative of the festival said, over loudspeaker, that they would make it up to all the attendees.
With all the fatal stage collapses in recent years -- and months, in some cases -- it was no doubt the right move.
Oh, and for anyone wondering about today's music, Doomtree was the best thing I saw by far. As my friend, Antiquiet and Crave Online editor Johnny Firecloud said, "I got chills in 90-something degree heat." So, at least we got to see that.
UPDATE: The gates are supposedly back open and the rain has died down, so I'm heading back in. Follow @Spinner on Twitter for any updates, service permitting.