North Coast Music Festival 2012: Summer's Last Stand

The fading final days of summer were celebrated in style with a visit to Chicago's North Coast Festival.

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Barely recovered from great mudfest of 2012, aka Lollapalooza, we headed back to the Midwest to celebrate Labor Day weekend at the third annual North Coast music festival. And what a way to end the summer! We spent three days roaming the grounds at Union Park, home to this DJ and electronic music fest, where people watching was first on our agenda. Festival fashion was in full swing as attendees jumped at the last chance to don their best tutus, hula-hoops, furry leg-warmers, body paint, and bikinis. Bright neon colors attire ruled the daytime, while bright neon lights—multi-colored glowsticks, LED necklaces, and glow-in-the-dark face paint—owned the night.

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Headliners included EDM favorite STS9, who also played a sold-out after party at Chicago's House of Blues, Chicago's own Umphree's McGee, who have been jamming in the Midwest for more than a decade, fan favorite Girl Talk (who danced so hard he broke his own stage last time I saw him perform) and dozens of other well-known and up and coming artists, like indie rockers YACHT and The Rapture, electronic trio Beats Antique (including their captivating, belly-dancing hype girl), rapper Big Boi, who broke out all the old school Outkast tracks, and household name dance DJs Steve Aoki, Steve Angello, and Paul Oakenfold. Headliner Pretty Lights closed the festival to a monstrous head-nodding, banner-waving, and totally exhausted (thought you'd never know it) crowd on Sunday night.

See you next year, Northcoast! We had a blast.

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