8 Differences Between Austin City Limits and Fun Fun Fun Fest

Austin’s famous Fun Fun Fun Fest is around the corner. You heard that right: It is three times as fun as your regular Fun Fest. Now for those of you who haven’t heard about FFF Fest or have only heard about it from the hipster kids down the hall from you who are constantly blasting their stereos too loud, FFF Fest is a music festival that takes place at Auditorium Shores in Austin. It is a weekend of crazy music, crazy times, and of course—crazy people. I found myself asking, why is FFF Fest not as publicized or popular as ACL to most of the UT college goers? I had only heard about it from a friend of mine who was studying to be a music producer. Well, I have listed out here the differences between ACL and FFF Fest so you can decide for yourself which is more up your alley.

1) The People


The audiences who attend ACL are varied from frat boys, to children and their families, to former rock and roll lovers, to just about everyone. ACL definitively gives a much more family-friendly vibe (though there are still inappropriate activities that may take place). ACL is the time of the year where UT college kids can frolic in the fields of Zilker Park and get the best possible Instagram post while sneaking alcohol into their shorts for the best weekend of the year.

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(yes I know this is Coachella)


Don’t even try to bring your stereotypical frat boy or sorority girl selves to this festival, and definitely do not bring your children here. The people who go to FFF Fest are not joking about their music. They are not there to get an Instagram or spend time with their friends; they are there to appreciate the music that they are die-hard fans of. People who go to FFF Fest typically are not afraid to be in the center of a mosh pit and are also the first ones to jump on top of the crowd in an attempt to crowd surf.

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2) The Fashion


ACL is the place for college kids to finally put their Flower-Crown-Pinterest-Board to the test and go full on Coachella-esque style. Girls wear the least possible clothing to fight the heat while also treating the weekend like a fashion show—trying to have the best possible outfit of the entire festival. Boys typically wear whatever outfit their girlfriend picks out for them or no shirt at all because it avoids the whole problem of pit stains entirely. The main fashion goal of ACL is to get weird and stand out.



For the people who go to FFF Fest, the last thing on their mind is what they’re going to wear. For the true, hardcore FFF Festers, clothes are only there for a way to keep warm at nights when the temperature drops. A lot of band t-shirts are worn, a lot of Zumiez and other brands of tank tops are worn. By no means is FFF Fest a fashion show like ACL is. If you try and be weird and stand out, you will literally be weird for standing out. Also, a huge FFF fashion trend is to wear a bandana around your face so the only thing you can see is your eyes—but don’t ask me why. I’ve been too scared to ask.

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3) The Price


If you get early bird tickets to ACL you are an overachiever, but will still have to pay about $250 for the weekend pass. Most people, like myself, are not so ahead of the game so the cost for tickets goes up to $300-350. The tricky thing about ACL is that it always sells out, which means the demand for tickets increases, which THEN means that Craiglist sellers can charge you an arm and a leg and your first born child for the wristbands.

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Since the people who go to FFF are there strictly for the music, there are no games being played by the ticket sellers. Tickets are $75 a day or $175 for the entire weekend. Kind of makes you regret giving your first-born child for that ACL ticket, huh? It gives you plenty of money to spend on other things at the festival like merchandise, food, and of course alcohol.

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4) The Size


This year at ACL approximately 450,000 people attended the festival spread over the course of two weekends. Though there are not 450,000 people at the festival at one time, it definitely can feel like it at times. Especially when it comes to more popular bands, the crowds can be overwhelming because everyone and their mothers attend the festival.

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Last year around 65,000 people attended the festival. FFF is known for being significantly smaller and more intimate than other festivals. The people who attend the festival are there for the music and don’t have time to be bothered with the randoms who will show up to other festivals for a social event. FFF provides a better chance for the festival-goers to get closer to the bands they love so much and interact with them more.

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Our Review of Weekend One at ACL

October is truly the best of the year to live in Austin, and one sole reason for that is ACL. It’s the most beautiful time of the year for everyone’s favorite bands to come together at Zilker Park and have amazing memories (or lack of memories for some).

It is the time of the year with endless amounts of traffic along with fights to the death for Ubers, second hand smoke for miles in all directions that can get even wilderness animals high from the fumes, girls whip out their flash tatts and most revealing outfits that are somehow accepted for the weekend, and let us not forget the bringing back of my favorite middle school dance: grinding. Nothing quite says romance like the art of grinding. So for those of you who do not get the opportunity to go to ACL, I genuinely feel sorry for you.

Photo by VH1

This past weekend was the first weekend of the festival and let me just tell you from firsthand experience it was absolutely insane. Despite the utter lack of deodorant worn by absolutely every one at the festival, the copious amounts of jiggling bodies showing their skin off to the sun for the first time in months, the beers that cost not only an arm and a leg but also your dignity and first born child, and of course the fact that 75,000 people were in my presence all trying to get an inch closer to the stage while using their elbows are weapons to do so, this weekend was truly outstanding.

The food was insane (over priced to the extent where I contemplated starvation on multiple occasions during the weekend, but delicious as hell), the set up at Zilker was fun and entertaining wherever you looked or walked, the fact that you could pay for everything with your wristband made every drunk person there the happiest they have ever been because they didn’t have to search their bodies for their credit cards only to realize they lost them in a mosh pit earlier that day, and of course the music—oh goodness the music was so incredible that if you missed it, I feel so bad for you that I only hope science can create a time machine soon so you can experience it.

Photo by rubi.com

Friday is a rough day because most people have class or work in the morning, so they are not always in the highest of spirits once they get there. It picked up quickly, however with dope artists like Cherub, Run the Jewels, Billy Idol, George Ezra (who will make you cry with the beauty that is his voice), Tame Impala and a bunch of others. Disclosure was truly the place to be for all the dead heads who just wanted to desperately find Molly.

And of course, the Foo Fighters. Dave Grohl never disappoints and being on the Samsung stage was the most ideal location for them to truly shine. They may be old, but they sure as hell put on an amazing performance.

Photo by Spin

Saturday is the biggest day of ACL every year. This is when everyone brings out their most festival selves in order to make the most of the longest day. Echosmith, Glass Animals, MisterWives (who truly defines the meaning of a badass), Walk the Moon, G-Eazy, Alabama Shakes, Bassnectar — shall I continue? This list pretty much speaks for itself. The only problem with the Saturday line up was choosing with favorite artists to see and which ones to tragically miss.

And then, of course, there was Drake. Oh, sweet, sweet Drake. For those of you who, like myself, have followed Drake since he was in a wheelchair in Degrassi, then this moment really could be considered a peak of your lives. Not only did he shower the entire audience with love for not only Texas but also Austin, he performed the craziest set to ever grace the stages at Zilker. For those of you who probably have eardrum damage or lost any limbs while pushing yourself to the front of the stage to see Drake, I truly applaud you. His stage was so packed, it seemed like every single person at the concert was there to listen to him. The only thing that would have made his performance better: singing the Degrassi theme song. Hey, one can only dream.  Also note: Drake has gotten significantly hotter over the past year, so if you ever put him in the friendzone, reconsider.

Photo by Austin 360

Sunday was my personal favorite day of the festival. Sundays are always nice because everyone chooses to relax and stay chill instead of raging their faces off. The only problem with Sunday was the fact that I had to make some cut throat decisions in who to see since the day was packed with some of the most popular and famous artists of right now. From Years and Years, to Of Monsters and Men, to Alt-J, to my personal favorite, Hozier, and everyone in between, it was a day of unreal music and good vibes only. For those of you who did see Hozier, I think we can all agree that him singing “Black Bird” by the Beatles was one of the highlights of the entire concert.

Photo by Austin 360

But then, would the weekend really be complete without The Weeknd absolutely slaying the stage? I don’t think so. There was skepticism on how he was going to perform due to his mellow songs, but he really killed it. The audience went back for what looked like miles. At one point, he even dropped a Beyoncé classic in singing “Drunk in Love” which made every girl in the audience fall for him even harder than they had before. Please come back, The Weeknd, all of Austin is begging you.

Though I feel I could talk about this weekend of ACL for the rest of my life, I will leave you all with this one last piece of insight: “Way up, I feel blessed”. Does this apply to everyday life? No. Am I still not over Drake’s performance on Saturday? Never will be.

To those of you who are going for weekend two—strap yourselves in because you’re in for the ride of a lifetime.