Concert Superspreader

Claire Chiabai, Print Staff

   Despite the lingering dangers of the COVID-19 virus, Lollapalooza, a popular music festival, was held in Chicago, Illinois this past summer.  From July 29 to Aug 1, a collection of concerts featured popular artists like Tyler, the Creator, Marshmello and Trippie Redd to an audience of over 380,000 members.

   Attendees of Lolla were required to take certain measures in order to create a safer environment for the event.  These precautions were mandatory for anyone looking to get into the venue.

   “You had to hold up your vaccination card as you were going in, and then there was someone who took the card and made sure it was ‘real’.  If you weren’t vaccinated, it was recommended that you wear a mask, and I did see a lot of people doing so,” Gianna Calao (12) said.

   The potential risk of infection did not deter the massive crowds at each concert venue.  In fact, the turnout was nearly the same as years previous to the pandemic.

   “I feel like a lot of people were ready to feel a sense of normalcy and that affected the crowd numbers.  A lot of people just wanted to hear live music and experience it again,” Jill Hearne (12) said.  Classmate Calao agrees: “I think everyone forgot that COVID even existed, and they were just happy to finally be at a concert or event again.”

   The atmosphere of normalcy was not unfounded; as reported on ABC7 Chicago News, Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner, Dr. Allison Arwady, shared that “there was “no evidence” of a “super-spreader” event,” despite the general fear of such an occurrence. 

“There were about 385,000 attendees, and roughly 90 percent were vaccinated,” Arwady said.

   Even so, the event was not entirely COVID-free.  However, Arwady continued to explain that “So far, only 203 attendees have tested positive for COVID-19, or about 0.05 percent of people who attended.”  

   The drastically low number of cases further classified Lollapalooza 2021 as a successful summer event.  Students of Lake Central are already looking forward to a return to exciting opportunities, and can’t wait to safely attend future events!