At the announcement of the “Great People’s Festival of Rock’n’Roller Fans” Andreas Gabalier spoke with 170,000 guests. And a folklore festival with a Ferris wheel, roller coaster, accompanying program, traditional costumes sales and handicraft shows. A lot has happened since that first press conference in November 2019, including the pandemic, which is why the organizers are now allowing the most hype. Now only 100,000 visitors are expected at the concert of the singer from Graz.
What does “only” mean? This is still 30,000 more than Rolling stones at the Olympic Stadium, when Munich becomes “the epicenter of popular rock’n’roll” on Saturday.
The first of three open air events this year at Messe Riem (followed by Helene Fischer on August 20 and Robbie Williams on August 27) is sure to be crowded. Visitors can no longer expect a roller coaster, but at least an “adventure zone”. Here, visitors can extend the waiting time at 70 stalls and 50 food trucks from 12:00 to enter the actual concert arena and start the Gabalier show at 20:00. And this is what the organizer asks to compensate for the assault throughout the afternoon.
With additional “Early Entry Tickets” available for purchase, visitors can then secure a front seat from 2pm or a block seat in the stands as these are not numbered; all the rest and guests with VIP tickets who are fed in the Käfer exhibition hall have admission from
Long waiting times are to be expected
Even if it is spread over the afternoon: waiting times are to be expected. Each visitor should go straight to the entrance marked on the ticket, and this gets a bit complicated: the east entrance is at Messe Freigelände Süd (underground station, Messe Ost), the west at Freigelände Nord, the north at the temporary fan bridge, bus parking and to Hofbräuallee and VIP at Messe-Parkhaus-West (Messe West underground exit).
It is best to print a 36-page information brochure on the organizer’s website (www.leutgebgroup.com). It also includes a detailed itinerary with all official parking options, for example in the Fröttmaning arena, Airbus, the airport and Unterföhring. People who park there will be transported to the fair and back by free transport (and will take part in the lottery as a thank you).
The ring road around the exhibition center is closed, signs direct the traffic, the Munich police are there with over 150 officers to avoid chaos. MVG is also trying to tame the crowds, sometimes tripling the number of metro trains, but still expecting bottlenecks: from 11am there will be a five-minute break with the number 8 railway from the Olympic Center; Additional trains run between Harthof and Messe from 17:00 to 02:00 on the U2 line.
Even after the concert at 10.30 pm, additional trains run as U2 and U8 exclusively from Messestadt West; but since many want to go home at the same time, train stations can be closed at times. The MVG gives you the clue to walk to the S-Bahn, to the Riem and Feldkirchen train stations (S 2) and to Trudering (S 4 and S 6).
Drink plenty of water and pack a rain poncho
Of course, running for miles and standing long at a concert can lead to unexpected suffering, warns Markus Bauer, head of operations at Johanniter. “In the past, at Andreas Gabalier’s concerts, we handed out patches by the meter because the brogues or the dirndel pumps were causing blisters yet.” Johanniter and their partners are at the fair with around 100 volunteer doctors and paramedics, spread over five stations.
From experience, Bauer advises you to prepare well for the evening. In addition to good shoes, she recommends drinking plenty of soft drinks (no free water points though), applying sunscreen (small shaded areas), and packing a raincoat as the weather forecast says it may rain and umbrellas are forbidden on site, as is bags larger than one 4-sheet Din-A.
After all, everyone is responsible for themselves, or as Andreas Gabalier put it at a press conference, “Only go through life as fast as your angel can fly.”