Volume Survival Guide

Fully experience the two-day Inlander music festival relatively unscathed

click to enlarge See downtown Spokane come alive for Volume. - KRISTEN BLACK
Kristen Black
See downtown Spokane come alive for Volume.

One weekend out of the year, thousands of all-ages music fans zoom around the streets of Spokane from one venue to another, looking for that next fix of awesome live music. The excitement in the air is palpable; downtown feels cool, young and vibrant. That's what Volume is all about.

With two days of 90-plus local and national bands to see and high-octane fun to have on the trajectory, it's easy to get carried away. Here are some essential tips to get you through Spokane's largest two-day music festival.


At the risk of sounding like your mother, it's wise to drink water at regular intervals throughout the festival. Especially with high temperatures, as it was outside in 2015 (and also at one of the venues, which decided to turn on the heat), dehydration is bound to happen. While it makes sense that you'll want to drink some alcohol, do so slowly, with water breaks in between. You have two days; you won't want to miss a thing.


Any festival goer worth their salt knows they'll be running between venues trying to catch the next hot act. That's where proper footwear comes in. Flip-flops? Leave those for the beach. High heels? Unless you're as talented as Bryce Dallas Howard in Jurassic World, they'll only slow you down. Instead, come prepared with a solid shoe that can last all night long — through a sidewalk track meet, a potential mosh pit and high-flyin' dancing.


Think of it this way: The earlier you pay for your wristbands, the more money you'll have in your pockets to buy band merchandise and alcohol (which you're drinking slowly, of course. See above). Get your money's worth by arriving at the event as early as possible; each night's schedule begins around 5 pm.


Protecting your ears isn't for old people. Volume, as its name suggests, gets loud — especially in some of the smaller venues. As you want to have hearing well into your twilight years, go ahead and put these spongy bits of foam into your earholes. Rock on!


But don't feel the need to stick to it. If you start freaking out about a missed band, your good-time buzz will fade fast. Have a plan, consult the Volume Guide map or website for times and locations, but always go with the flow. You never know what new band you'll accidentally discover.

  • or

About The Author

Laura Johnson

Laura moved to the great Inland Pacific Northwest this summer. She is the Inlander's new music editor.