And so it begins…
Tonight, a city’s recurring nightmare recurs again as Kenny Chesney takes the stage at Heinz Field for his semi-annual romp/riot on Pittsburgh’s North Shore. If you’re not familiar, Chesney’s Pittsburgh appearances have become the stuff of local legend, and not the kind you tell to your kids to inspire them, the kind you tell your kids to shock them into submission.
Tons of trash, spates of arrests, hospitalizations — and did we mention the trash?
Anyway, because of this backstory, the City of Pittsburgh is taking no chances this year and treating No Shoes Nation™️ as you might an invading army.
They’re taking a “zero tolerance” approach and imposing heightened rules for attendees and bystanders.
So we decided to provide you with a complete rundown of what that entails and what you need to know if you’re planning to go.
Why is Pittsburgh so tense?
We’ll let these headlines speak for themselves.
• Kenny Chesney fans are filthy animals (AV Club)
Does this only happen at Chesney shows in Pittsburgh?
Is anything else going on Saturday?
Chesney is one of three big league shows in Pittsburgh on Saturday, and one of many in what the Post-Gazette is calling the busiest concert weekend in Pittsburgh’s history. And there’s also the Arts Festival happening Downtown. So, if you’re opposed to crowds or traffic, maybe stay home this weekend and send those Christmas thank you cards you’ve been meaning to send.
I’m going or want to go to the Chesney show. What do I need to know?
- Leave these items at home. (TribLive)
- Tickets are still available — and lots of them.
- Parking is going to be a disaster, and expensive. Lots open at 1 p.m. (Patch)
- For those of you that already have tickets, stadium gates open at 4 p.m. and the “Trip Around the Sun Tour” concert starts at 5 p.m. with openers Thomas Rhett, Old Dominion and Brandon Lay.
- Police are taking a “zero tolerance” approach and will be cracking down on underage drinking, public drunkenness and any violence. (WPXI)
- No boat, no problem. (TribLive)
What does Chesney have to say about this?
“His connection to the Rooneys and to fans in Pittsburgh, where he played some of his first stadium shows, always makes this stop special,” per the Post-Gazette, which spoke to Chesney.
And what happens if fans make this show *too* special?
Pittsburgh police have a 27-foot-tall watchtower, and they’re sick of your shit, so consider yourself warned.
And above all else, be safe and have fun and respect other people and other people’s property. If you do, Pittsburgh will welcome you back with open arms — and probably fewer police.