The Ultimate Guide to Hangout Fest

See live performances on the beach at the Hangout Fest in Gulf Shores AlabamaHangout Fest (noun):

  • Music festival that takes place May 20-22, 2016 on the sugar white sand beaches of Gulf Shores, Alabama
  • Let’s try that again.  The most awesome music festival on the Gulf Coast; it has been compared to epic music fest Bonnaroo … but let’s face it … Hangout Fest is on the beach versus in the middle of Tennessee, so it’s much better.
  • Seriously, it’s the thing you’ve been looking forward to since tickets went on sale last November.  Surf. Sand. Music. This lineup: The Weeknd, Calvin Harris, Florence + the Machine, Alabama Shakes, Ellie Goulding, Lenny Kravitz …. Are you buying tickets yet?
Enjoy fun poolside at Hangout Fest in Orange Beach AL
Photo by Josh Rhinehart

Festival Funsies

Hangout Fest is like everything that’s awesome about summer crammed into one epic three-day musical event (there’s even crawfish and fresh seafood for crying out loud). You don’t need much to enjoy the experience.  Just throw on a bathing suit or rock your best flower-child bohemian wears (and sunblock … definitely sunblock) and head down to Gulf Shores for the festival where (in addition to the music) you can expect:

Malibu Beach House: Deejay tent classified as the “best party at Hangout” with Hippie Sabotage, Speaker of the House, Jack Novak, and Jerry Folk

Take a ride on the Ferris Wheel at Hangout Fest in Orange Beach Alabama
Photo by Josh Rhinehart

The Ferris Wheel: This is the only way we recommend “riding high”; get a one-of-a-kind view of the whole beach and festival on the massive light-up wheel of wonder.

Mega Drop: In case the Ferris Wheel doesn’t rock your world, then the mega drop certainly will; get a sky-high view of Hangout Fest before you drop.

Craft Beer Backyard: Refresh your sing-along vocals with a classy craft brew.

Camp Hangout: This new festival experience captures everything good about summer camp and crams it into one space: tug-of-wars, slip and slides, face painting, water balloon launches … you’ll wonder why camp as a kid wasn’t as fun (probably because there wasn’t a craft beer backyard?)

Hammock Beach: Kick back like you own the coast on this relaxing, laid back beach o’ hammocks.

Wedding Chapel: It’s a little white gazebo so charming and sweet that you’ll be ready to carpe diem and say ‘I do’ in the most memorable moment of your life (warning: despite the charming chapel façade, your nuptial story may or may not be appropriate for future offspring).

Wear your wristbands at all times during Hangout Fest in Orange Beach
Photo by Josh Rhinehart

Festival FYIs

So, obviously Hangout Fest is just the best, and to ensure that you have nothing but a fantastic time, you’ll want to follow the fest’s very understandable rules.

  • Please do not BYOB or any other controlled substance for that matter. Hangout has a no tolerance policy; also, note to the under-21 crowd, underage drinking laws are strictly enforced.
  • Anyone under 18 who is in attendance must be accompanied by an adult age 21 or older.
  • Kids 10 and under are free (woohooo) with a ticket-holding adult; though, no more than two kids under 10 per adult.
  • Limit your personal belongings; aside from the fact that you don’t want to feel like a Sherpa, bag sizes are limited to 20’ x 15’ x 13’. We recommend bringing the essentials: hat, sunblock, sunglasses, towel, money, ID, shuttle pass, and cell phone (hey, there’s no time like the present to bring fanny packs back into style)

Another thing to be mindful of is that the Festival is a general-admission, rain-or-shine event, and you must have your wristband on at all times.

Easy enough, right?

Enjoy live concerts all day and night during the Hangout Fest in Orange Beach Alabama
Photo by Dave Vann

The other thing that’s important to plan is how to get to the Fest and how to leave each night. Festival hours are 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. each day, and there’s no crashing on the beach.

Because of limited parking, it’s recommended that you take a shuttle from your hotel or from one of the designated parking/drop-off sites. Don’t get us wrong, you can bike it or hike it as you like it, but keep in mind that you’ll be on foot or two wheels when leaving, too, and you may not feel up to a 3-mile hike in the dark (just saying).

So, I think we’ve covered the essential FYIs and funsies … everything you absolutely need to know to have the ultimate time hanging out and hanging loose at Hangout Fest.

If you’re ready to party like it’s summer 2016, then head to Hangout Fest May 20-May 22 for the event of the season. After you digest this ultimate guide, head to the Hangout Festival website for the full festival line-up, to buy tickets … all of that good stuff.


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