What you should know before going to Governors Ball NYC

You can still catch Lil Wayne, Bazzi and Major Lazer. Festival passes haven’t sold out.

Governors Ball is here, meaning music festival season is finally upon us. 

The annual three-day event, now in its ninth year, brings some of the music industry’s biggest names (and some trendy eats) to New York City this weekend. 

Throw on some sunglasses and shorts and you’re ready to party in the park — almost. If it rains, just slip into a poncho and be prepared for a seriously muddy mosh pit. 

Here’s what to expect at Governors Ball and everything you’ll need to know. 

When and where:

The festival will be held at Randall’s Island Park May 31 through June 2. 

Who’s performing? 

Find out where the love went when Lil Wayne takes to the stage on May 31. Tyler, The Creator (May 31), Major Lazer (June 1), Nas (June 2) and The Strokes (June 2) are among the headliners, but other must-see performers include Charli XCX, Bazzi and Ty Dolla $ign. For the full list of more than 60 artists slated to perform, visit govball.com.

What’s new at Gov Ball this year?

Gov Ball is welcoming a series of changes to its annual festival in 2019, including a pop-up bodega and a brand-new stage. “Every year, we try to make the festival as New York City as possible because Gov Ball is NYC,” says Tom Russell, a festival co-founder. “We want people to walk in and feel this is really authentic. This is really New York.”

The new stage, the Bud Light Dive Bar, will feature rising talent. The fest now has five total performance spaces. 

The debut of the pop-up Gov Ball Bodega will help with all of your festival needs, like sunscreen, snacks and other items you may have forgotten. It’ll also have an on-site ATM. 

The fest will celebrate Pride Month for the first time, with a Pride Parade on the festival grounds, LGBTQ performances and shows featuring drag queens Golden Delicious, Hibiscus and Chelsea Piers. The celebration is set for Saturday.

What’s on this year’s vendor lineup?

Don’t just come hungry, come craving every sweet and savory eat you’ve spotted on Instagram for the past few months. More than 20 of the city’s trendiest vendors will be setting up shop in the park. New savory options include Cousins Maine Lobster, Walter’s Hot Dogs, Arancini Bros and King David Tacos. Milk & Cream Cereal Bar (new), Dō, Stuffed Ice Cream, Doughnuttery are available for dessert. 

Are tickets still available? 

General admission tickets for all three days of the festival are still available for purchase. Tickets start at $115. Three-day passes are $305. Purchase tickets online at governorsballmusicfestival.com/tickets.

What you should bring: 

Sunscreen (if the weather holds up), so you get a perfect — yet safe — glow that’ll make your co-workers envious when you return to the office come Monday morning.

An external charger, because you don’t want to be the only one who can’t take a selfie next to the Gov Ball sign because you used up your battery power Snapchatting your cup of cookie dough.

A good sense of humor, so you have the perfect reaction when you find yourself caught in the middle of one of the festival organizers’ annual pranks

A poncho, since there’s a 50 percent chance of rain in Sunday’s forecast, according to the National Weather Service. 

What you shouldn’t bring:

Water. You’ll need to put down the vodka at some point, but don’t feel the need to load up your pack with water bottles. There are free refillable water stations throughout the festival grounds. 

Your wallet. Gov Ball is making it super easy for you to visit the bar and food trucks. Connect your credit card to your electronic entry wristband to purchase items using Gov Ball Cashless — because you know you’d probably end up misplacing your wallet anyway.

How you can get there:

Randall’s Island is accessible by subway, bus and ferry, so you can party responsibly. 

If you choose the subway, take the 4, 5 or 6 train to 125th Street and transfer to the X80 express bus ($6.50 round-trip). The bus takes festivalgoers directly to the park entrance. 

Manhattan ferries ($26 for a one-day pass, $60 for the weekend) will operate every 15 minutes, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

Festival shuttle buses will make trips to Randall’s Island from Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg throughout the weekend between 11 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Return buses depart at 9 p.m. Tickets are $30 round trip.

Meghan Giannotta