Smile Politely

BEST outdoor music venues: Krannert Center amphitheater + Loose Cobra

From our BEST 2020 feature: 

BEST outdoor music venues: Krannert Center amphitheater + Loose Cobra 

Oh, how I dream of simply watching some human perform some piece of art for me and the rest of us! I have a cold drink in my hand, and I look across the crowd to find people of all ages, all backgrounds, smiling, moving, dancing, ingesting, the work of some brave and talented soul. I close my eyes and listen; it is glorious, and I am enraptured. 

In 2020, we lost the reality of this dream. The Rose Bowl did an amazing job doing what they could to make sense of it all, and put on live music to the best of its ability and that is why they are part of this list. 

In 2021, we are going to be more prepared, and more aware, of what is safe and what is not, as far as finding ways to recreate this dream. What we know is that outdoor gatherings are far safer than indoor gatherings. What we also know is that we don’t truly know when we will be able to safely gather inside. 

Thankfully, the designer and architect of Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, Max Abramovitz, saw it fit to create a gorgeous outdoor amphitheater at the center of the complex. Graciously, Matt Talbott, the owner of Loose Cobra in Tolono has built an outdoor venue in the parking lot of his little dive. These are the best places to see an outdoor show in the Champaign-Urbana area. 

And in 2021, when the weather first starts to turn, when the temperature hits about oh… let’s say sixty degrees or so, you can be sure that these venues are going to be active once again. Whether we have to wear a mask (which is NOT a big deal, Jesus H. Christ) or whether we are free to go uncovered, I can assure you, we will dream no more. We will be awake, and alive, together, and we will enjoy these shows, once again. (Seth Fein)

Top image by Anna Longworth.

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