Rock Concerts: Don't be afraid to bring the kids
The anticipation was palpable as Blue October fans began congregating well in advance of the doors opening. Worries about uncooperative weather earlier in the day faded under a beautiful, central Texas, evening sky.
Finding a parking spot was painless, thanks to Whitewater Rock's ample parking and helpful staff directing me at every turn. My kids were excited. This was their first concert, and more importantly, the first time they would see their uncle Ryan perform. I admit I questioned my sanity when we decided to bring four kids to a concert, but I knew they would have an unforgettable evening.
I was impressed by the efficiency Whitewater's staff directed the crowds and how fast they scanned tickets and assigned wristbands. The venue clearly understood the importance of implementing a good crowd management plan. Clearly marked signs indicated where lines should form and staff members communicated with the crowds at all times. A strong police and venue security staff presence gave you an immediate sense of security, and made me feel better about bringing the entire family.
As a surprise, Ryan had made arrangements for us to sit a VIP table directly in front of the stage. My son's eyes lit up as soon as he saw his uncle take the stage and rip through his electric violin. He's grown up listening to Blue October, but there is nothing like a live music show to bring it all home. The band played a great mix of old favorites like Italian Radio and Sweet and Somber, and new hits like Hate Me and Say It.
After a two-hour set list, my kids were beyond tired, but we all returned home with memories of a fantastic family experience. I couldn't help but wonder why more live music venues aren't catering to families more often, as it's a constant struggle to find activities that can be enjoyed together. As parents use your own discretion as to the type of events you bring you kids to, but don't be afraid to enjoy a concert once in a while!
Thank you Ryan for an unforgettable evening, and my compliments to Whitewater for an exceptionally managed event.