Thursday, July 22, 2010

Partying Like It's 19...84?

Do you need to find a way to stay (or get!) organized? Try the BusyBodyBook - giveaway here.

Or if you'd rather be active, I also have a JumpStart Get Moving Family Fitness game for the Wii that I'm giving away here.


Last night, Melisa and I went to Ravinia. Ravinia used to be one of my favorite places to go when I lived in the city - super easy to take the Metra up (and get off *at* the concert park) and $8 for lawn seats to see the CSO with name bands not that much more.

A ummm little while has passed, and I now live a healthy drive from Ravinia and have two children and all sorts of excuses. And it's also slightly more expensive. Those $8 tickets don't exist anymore. Last night, the B-52s were playing, and we paid $27 to sit on the lawn - which granted isn't bad for a concert these days. It just means I'm not going to Ravinia a few times a month!

It was Melisa's first time, however, and we decided to do it right. Of course we both also sorta ran out of time, so we didn't get the way cool wine glass holders or low table that we initially talked about, but our food and experience - ahem - rocked.

I learned long ago that you don't just bring a blanket to sit on. Since it cools down so much over the course of the night, the ground gets really damp - and so does your blanket. So I brought my tarps along to place under them. Except that last night was so incredibly humid that everything got wet, from my yummy homemade twix-knockoff bars to my shoes to the cooler and more. Fortunately, we didn't care because we had fun anyway!

There is a beautiful pavilion where the concert takes place, and there is also the option to buy (more expensive) tickets to sit there for the concert. I've never done it though, as I prefer sitting in the lawn, hanging out and enjoying a picnic while listening to the concert - and people watching, of course!

There are people everywhere sitting on the lawn - as far as the eye can see in both directions there are people with blankets and tables and chairs eating and drinking - and excitedly waiting for the concert to start.

Orrrr perhaps sneaking in a little bit of last minute work, as the case may be.

While we were there, we realized that someone else we knew was also attending the concert. And being the responsible bloggers we are, we set out in search of Napwarden - who turned out to be sitting exactly where I usually do when I go to Ravinia - but we couldn't sit there because there were already huge tables set up. Ironic, no? We chatted for awhile before returning to our feast.

And what a feast we had. I brought fresh French bread and spinach dip (and yes the loaf was soggy from humidity by the end of the night!) and my spinach and orzo salad - plus the oh so yummy aforementioned twix bars. Melisa made a really, really yummy curried chicken salad and a great fruit salad, too. And then of course the water and Mike's Hard Lemonade. (Black cherry? Oh please tell me they'll make that flavor forever; it's my new favorite!)

We of course had way too much food and silly us - we brought "nice" dishes to display it in, so we had some heavy stuff to cart back to our cars, but that was ok. Leftovers aren't bad (except that my husband already accidentally dumped the leftover orzo salad on my kitchen floor *sniff*).

Oh yeah... and there was a concert, too. I almost forgot!

The B-52s were great. They haven't lost a step, even though they're older than I want to think about. Sitting on the lawn provides great sound as they have speakers everywhere.

And the people watching - oh the people watching! It was unfortunately too dark (no lights) for me to take any video or decent pictures, but the people dancing and singing all over around us was worth the price of admission alone. I loved seeing how into the concert so many people were!

You are also able to walk up behind the pavilion and stand to watch, knee deep with other concert goers. I loved being able to see the funky stage and awesome hair and clothes the B-52s wore.

And of course, they played all the great songs - Roam was early on, Loveshack was a great extended concert play version, Wig was their opening song, etc etc. And of course there was an encore. There had to be - and it was the perfect ending of Rock Lobster. Part of what makes this so much fun is that you could see how much they were enjoying it and how much fun they were having, too.

As the concert ended around 10:30, we packed everything up and headed back to the shuttle buses to start our drive home. I only had one call from Melisa - where she had to quickly disconnect because she lost a windshield wiper! - and we both arrived home safely and of course too wired to sleep.

But I think I can talk her into going to another concert at Ravinia. And maybe then we'll have our cool table and wire wine glass holders.


Laura July 23, 2010 at 12:03 AM  

Wow cool concert location! We have nothing like that up here, sadly :(

And the twix-taculars---really?!?! that good? I'm happy to hear it :)

Melisa Wells July 23, 2010 at 6:14 AM  

Oddly enough, the Twix bar recipe must have gotten lost on its way to my inbox.... :)

It was such a fun night!! Can't wait to find out who's playing there next summer so we can make plans!

(P.S. Thanks for writing your post nearly exactly how mine has been pre-written in my head! :) )

septembermom July 23, 2010 at 10:25 AM  

What a great way to see a terrific concert! You look great too :) That's a fun girls night out. Good for you in every way. I need one of those nights.

Pat July 23, 2010 at 12:29 PM  

This sounds like a total blast, Michelle! Yay for you and Melisa on your way cool girls' night out! You were all quite organized to bring all that food.

Dawn Parsons Smith July 23, 2010 at 7:00 PM  

Sounds like fabulous fun to me! Love the B-52's!

Michelle July 23, 2010 at 11:41 PM  

Laura - Oh I love having the low key outdoor theater with all sorts of music from Peter, Paul & Mary to Train to Indigo Girls to the CSO. And yeah - they rocked!

Melisa - Ummmm were you looking for it? Sorry, I'll pass it along. You aren't going again until next summer? Tsk tsk!

Kelly - Aww thanks! You're too kind, and YES go take those nights :)

Pat - It was so much fun. And note that we were organized on the food but not the rest of it.

Bee and Rose - Oh it was SO much fun. I love Ravinia and don't get there nearly often enough.

Anonymous July 24, 2010 at 4:32 AM  

What a amazing time! I'm in love with the lawn concert location!

Michelle July 24, 2010 at 10:34 PM  

Patty - It is a great location and just so much fun. I just wish it were a little closer to me ;)

Lucy August 6, 2010 at 10:01 PM  

Love Ravinia! We took Little Ricky earlier this summer and he had a blast. In a couple of weeks we're headed back (just hubby & me) for the Counting Crows. Sooooo excited!

Michelle August 10, 2010 at 9:42 PM  

Lucy - Ravinia is great. Which Counting Crows show are you going to? I'm tentatively supposed to go to the one on the 24th. It should be a GREAT show!

Lucy August 11, 2010 at 1:30 PM  

We're going the 24th. Counting Crows are my FAVORITE so Ricky surprised me with AWESOME seats--7 or 8 rows back, center. Sooooo excited! We'll have to hook up if you're there!

Michelle August 14, 2010 at 10:01 PM  

Lucy - Very nice! I'll definitely let you know if we end up going - still up in the air, but that's the night we'd go!

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