Year 3 is locked and loaded! 9 days to go!  Airfare. Transportation. Condo.  Credentials.  Movie tickets for the first 4 films secured.

Out of the entire trip, lodging will most likely be the most expensive thing you’ll pay for. Though there are other things you can drop a lot of money on such as the type of credentials you can buy, we have found the most expensive credentials are not necessarily the best.

Where you stay will greatly determine how enjoyable your festival experience will and can be. I think the idea is to not spend a lot of money, but stay within walking distance of Main Street.  If you are there to experience the films, the music, the dancing, the talks, and even ski the slopes – remaining close to Main Street is important.

And if you attend a party or two, have a few drinks or several, it’s always nice to be within a few blocks of where you are going to sleep. Or not sleep.  Because there is so much to do, and if you like to push hard like I do, you may not find yourself sleeping very much.  During the first 4-5 days of the festival, I find myself averaging about 4 1/2 hours of sleep a day.

Lodging Sundance Film Festival Lodging

Though you may not sleep much, when you do bounce in and out, it is important to get good rest and since you’re going to play in a town where others go to pamper themselves once a season, you should too!

Sundance Film Festival 2015 Lodging Sundance Film Festival Lodging

This will do!

There are shuttles that stop on all of the routes and they roll about every 20 minutes, so if you’re going to theaters outside the area, they’re quite handy. Renting a car doesn’t have many benefits. Unless you’re really good at driving in snow on icy slopes and enjoy driving for long periods of time searching for a parking space, there’s not much point. You can even get to Redford’s Sundance Lodge on a shuttle.

Though you could throw down and rent a mansion on the hill that overlooks the scenic Park City, we prefer to save it for the restaurants, shops, tickets, and special events you’ll come upon.  Some of them surprising and unexpected – in a good way!

Last year, we stood in line for 90 minutes in the snow waiting to see a documentary film that was getting a lot of hype called 20 Feet From Stardom. The film was about the backup singers over the last few decades that not only shaped the sound the bands they backed up, but the singers the stars couldn’t have survived without. The weather was a balmy 10 degrees and we thought we were going to get in. As they let everyone ahead of us in and the line moved us towards the doors that now represented the nearest warmth we would find for a few blocks, they lowered the red rope in front of us and raised their voice, “That’s it!”  People moaned. “If five people come out, we can let five people go in! You’re welcome to stay in line or go enjoy the evening!”

My sister and I had ate dinner and had a ‘few drinks’ at the pub where we just watched the 49ers get beat by the Seahawks. We even lost a bet to several Seahawks fans and paid up by buying them a round of drinks. That one hurt!

When the gentleman at the rope saw us wearing our 9ers gear, he said, “9ers fans huh?”, we replied with “We bleed red and gold.”  He lifted the rope and said, “Go inside and enjoy yourselves.” Some behind us moaned out loud again and we hustled indoors where it was warm.

And there they were.

Sundance Film Festival

Five of the ladies from the film being introduced one by one to an intimate room of about 250 of us. We never saw the film at the festival.  Instead, we were treated to a 90 minute plus performance of the hits they sang backup to through the years. On occasion, members of bands they sang for like the Rolling Stones and Stone Sour came on to the stage to perform with them as they belted out songs like Gimme Shelter. These ladies tore it up!!

Preparing for the festival is important indeed.  Sometimes it’s the things you’re unprepared for that will please you the most.  Memories that can not be recreated.


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