Up to 800,000 people are expected to flock to Golden Gate Park for this weekend's free music festival Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, which runs Friday through Sunday.
The massive party takes place in Hellman Hollow, Marx Meadow, and Lindley Meadow beginning at noon on October 4 and 11 a.m. on October 5-6 and running until 7 p.m. each night. As in previous years, scores of live acts are scheduled to perform; big names include Bonnie Raitt, Emmylou Harris, Low, Calexico, Los Lobos, Gogol Bordello, Chris Isaak, Billy Bragg, and Conor Oberst.
Download the Hardly Strictly app on iPhone or Android to keep handy details like a festival map and artist schedule at your fingertips. If you don't own a smartphone, the same information can be printed out as PDFs from the website.
Driving to Golden Gate Park is a guaranteed nightmare to be avoided at all costs. Take public transportation, ride a bike (self-parking and valet available), or walk.
BART riders should exit at Civic Center station and take the MUNI 5L bus, which will run with limited stops until it reaches the north side of Golden Gate Park at 30th Avenue and Fulton streets. Returning passengers can catch the 5L on Fulton between 25th and 30th Avenues and take it to Hyde and Fulton streets, one block from Civic Center BART.
The south side of Golden Gate Park can be accessed via MUNI's N-Judah line, which will run an extra LRV service from Caltrain to the end of the line at Ocean Beach. The Golden Gate Park shuttle travels around the entire park and is free on weekends. Extra MUNI service will run from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
Check the event FAQ for particulars on what you can and can't bring and do at the festival. For example, dogs and alcohol are okay but camping is not.
Della Mae, Poor Man's Whiskey (Friday morning middle school program), Richard Thompson, Martha Wainwright, Mike Scott & Steve Wickham of The Waterboys, Los Lobos Disconnected, Dave Alvin with Greg Leisz, The String Cheese Incident, Sturgill Simpson, Allah-Las, Nicki Bluhm & The Gramblers, Kat Edmonson, Low, Sallie Ford & The Sound Outside, Joy Kills Sorrow, Ryan Bingham, Boz Scaggs, Elvin Bishop, Seldom Scene, Robert Ellis, Trampled By Turtles, Spirit Family Reunion, Loudon Wainwright III, Tumbleweed Wanderers, The Handsome Family, The Brothers Comatose, Peter Rowan Bluegrass Band featuring Yungchen Lhamo, Conor Brings Friends For Friday Featuring: Whispertown, The Cave Singers, The Felice Brothers, The Evens, First Aid Kit, Conor Oberst, MC Hammer (Friday morning middle school program), Natalie Maines, Bettye LaVette, Paul Kelly, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Calexico, The Wood Brothers, Steve Martin and Steep Canyon Rangers featuring Edie Brickell, Steve Earle & The Dukes, Mike Farris & The Roseland Rhythm Revue, G. Love & Special Sauce, The Devil Makes Three, The Flatlanders featuring Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore & Butch Hancock, Tift Merritt, Pieta Brown, The Jerry Douglas Band, LP, Gogol Bordello, Manchester Orchestra, Father John Misty, The Forest Rangers with Katey Sagal, Moonalice, Billy Bragg, Bonnie Raitt, Patty Griffin, The Go To Hell Man Clan, Shovels & Rope, Tim O'Brien & Darrell Scott, Kate McGarrigle Tribute with Martha & Sloan Wainwright & Special Guests, Nick Lowe, The Deep Dark Woods, Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands, Buddy Miller, Buddy Miller & Jim Lauderdale, Holler Down the Hollow: A Hardly Strictly Salute to the Masters, Evolfo Doofeht, Chris Isaak, Jesse DeNatale, Kieran Kane, Kevin Welch & Fats Kaplin, Robert Earl Keen, Sonny & The Sunsets, Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell, Jon Langford & Skull Orchard acoustic / FREAKONS, The Warren Hood Band, Justin Townes Earle, Freakwater, Tim O'Brien with Bryan Sutton & Mike Bub, Alison Brown, The Time Jumpers featuring Brad Albin, Larry Franklin, Paul Franklin, Vince Gill, "Ranger Doug" Green, Andy Reiss, Dawn Sears, Kenny Sears, Joe Spivey, Jeff Taylor & Billy Thomas, Supermule, Mark Lanegan, Ralph Stanley & The Clinch Mountain Boys, Jesse Dee