Here’s What I’ve Learned So Far About St. Cloud’s ‘Summertime By George’
So far my wife and I have been to Summertime By George 3 times this year. Each time we go we get better at mastering this festival. Here's some tips if you're going there.
There's about 10,000 people that go to Summertime By George each Wednesday during the summer in St. Cloud, so it gets a little hectic with people EVERYWHERE. People coming from every direction means you need to be constantly aware of where you're walking and visual distractions.
After our 3rd visit to Lake George for this festival, here's what we've learned...
- Get there early if you plan to drive a vehicle and park anywhere near Lake George. Half the streets around there are blocked off and there's only street parking. You can park in a ramp downtown and take a trolley to the festival as well.
- Take your motorcycle. If you have a motorcycle, take it there. Special parking for bikes are right behind the vendor parking lot and you'll be in there in no time.
- Bring a lawn chair. There's no existing seating, so everybody brings their own chairs. Not that it's uncomfortable sitting on the lawn, but I prefer to sit on a chair.
- Pets are allowed. Even though this is the case, please don't take your dog along if they go ballistic around other dogs. There's a few dogs there and each time we go, we see a dog freaking out at another dog walking by. Keep them at home if they can't hack it!
- Avoid the brick walkway. There's something about people walking that path that makes them forget that others are trying to move along. They suddenly stop to look around, or stagger and completely get your blood boiling. Walk on the grass in between the rows of people sitting to watch the music stage and you'll get where you're going faster.
- You need drink tickets to buy alcohol. Drinking alcohol is only allowed inside the roped off area and you need to buy a $5 drink ticket to buy either beer (in a can) or wine. You can't bring your own alcohol so don't try it, there are police everywhere checking. Nearly everybody gets their I.D. checked to get in to the drinking area, so don't forget to bring it along.
- There's a ton of vendors. It's like a county fair with how many vendors are there. They all take cash, so bring plenty if you plan to eat there. My favorite so far is the kettle corn vendor. You get a huge bag of fresh popped kettle corn for only $5 and it lasts you all week! The cheese curds are really good too.
Knowing these few things before you head out there will save you a ton of headaches when you get there. It's a fun event with great music...but a lot of people. Maybe we'll see you out there next time!