For a long time now, I've believed that the Music Farm should have TVs that span the length of the line, letting people know what to do/expect/how to successfully survive an evening at the Music Farm — kind of like Carowinds' "Please keep your arms and legs inside the ride" setup. So here's mine:
Things You Should be Doing While Waiting in Line:
• Take that crumpled-up ticket out of your pocket, unfold it, smooth it out if necessary.
• If you bought seven tickets for all of your friends, give each friend one ticket, as opposed to handing the door guy seven tickets and rushing the door.
• If you're 21, get out your ID. Yes, out of your wallet. Yes, even if you are 24 and should therefore never be carded again.
• If you're not 21, get out your $3. Yes, it's unfair, but it pays to keep a bar that accepts people under 21 open. You'd miss a lot of shows without that $3 surcharge/youth tax.
• If you have a fake ID or ID that isn't you, think twice. We'll take it. And give it to SLED. Thirty dollars won't get it back. Neither will a phone call from your parents. Seriously, that's happened.
• If you're on the guest list, know who put you on. Have their number. Don't tell us you met the band at a bar earlier in the day and they "promised to take care of you." I guarantee that's going to cost you in the long run.
Once You've Made It Inside:
• While waiting at the bar, decide what you want to drink. Don't wait until the bartender gets there and then start a conversation with your friend about what they'd like. The bartender will quickly move on.
• Once you have a bartender's attention, don't order a bunch of drinks and then order a few more that you forgot the first time. You get one turn, then it's on to the next folks.
• Have your money ready. No fishing through your wallet to see if you have enough cash. Or wanting to put half in cash after you figure out you don't have enough money and then start a tab for the rest. Come on.
• Don't order the shot you and your bartender friend made up. We don't know what a "Drunken Sailor" is and we don't want to make it from the recipe you have on your phone. Seriously five flavors of vodka in one? As shown on a text message from your friend? You're getting a Bud Light.
Extra Survival Guide:
• If you're under 21, don't hold anyone's beer. We won't believe you are "just holding it" or "picked it up off the ground to throw it away" — we won't believe you, even if you are just holding it. And now you're kicked out.
• Don't start a tab with the debit card that you know has no money in the account. We will call the cops. And we can find almost anyone on Facebook.
• Backstage at the Music Farm is basically a loading dock with lots of power boxes. It's not cool. Don't go back there. No one paid to see you, so keep your ass off the stage.
Kristen Thompson Gastaldo is the general manager of the Music Farm.