Rock the South survival guide

Rock the South 2021 (The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – For a decade, Rock the South (RTS) has promised a hot and sweaty, boot-stomping good time. Founder Shane Quick and his team have brought in beloved classic and modern country superstars and the best up-and-coming young guns to entertain the tens of thousands who flock to Cullman every summer. Whether this is your first year at RTS or you’re an old hat, here are some tips to make your weekend at RTS the best time possible. 

Study the map before you go 

Cullman County Sheriff Matt Gentry strongly urged festivalgoers to have a parking plan and route before leaving home to prevent confusion and traffic nightmares nearing the event.  

Official RTS parking will be available on County Road 469 which will be accessible by turning south on County Road 473 from U.S. Highway 278 West. The second official parking lot will be on County Road 436. This lot can be accessed from U.S. Highway 278 West by turning south on County Road 463 and then east on County Road 436. From the south, the lot is available from County Road 222 by turning north on County Road 421 then east on County Road 436.  

Private parking appears to be available on County Road 469, near the intersection of County Road 436 and Logan Avenue Southwest, and on Leonard Road south of Logan Avenue Southwest. Those spots are made available by private individuals and the cost will be determined by each lot.  

Remember where you parked 

There comes a time in all our lives when simply parking at Wal-Mart requires us to take a picture with our phones to remember where our vehicles are located. Trust me on this one. Take a picture of where you park so you aren’t required to wander aimlessly through thousands of cars and trucks in hopes of finding your vehicle. A trail of breadcrumbs will not suffice. Take a picture. 


With temperatures in the 90s over the weekend, water is destined to be your best friend. Drink water. Drink lots of water. Then, drink even more water. Signs of dehydration include dizziness, headache and fatigue. If you experience these symptoms, drink water immediately. Emergency services personnel will also be onsite at RTS. Know where they are located in case you or a friend find yourself in need of their services. 

Wear light-colored, loose-fitting clothing 

About that heat, light-colored cotton or wicking fabrics are recommended in hot, humid weather. Light colors will reflect instead of absorb sunlight, and loose-fitting clothing will allow the fabric to breathe better. 

Use sunscreen  

Protect your skin by applying sunscreen often. Consider using a sunblock with insect repellent to keep the pesky mosquitos, horseflies and all of their friends away. 

Pace yourself 

If drinking alcohol, don’t slam your drinks; go slow. Drink water between alcoholic beverages. Alcohol will contribute to dehydration. 

Have a designated driver or use Uber 

If drinking, have a designated sober driver or use an Uber driver which will be available. Do not risk driving after drinking. The potential for negative consequences is great. The best case scenario is being charge with a DUI. The worst is killing others and/or yourself. DO NOT DRINK AND DRIVE! 

Be patient 

Traffic will be backed up. More than 30,000 people will be gathered in the middle of a field each day. The port-a-potties will be gross. These are facts. Accept it and don’t complain about these realities. Remember that everyone involved in bringing RTS is trying their best to make the event the best possible experience for everyone attending. Consider saying “thank you” to those who are working overtime to protect and serve. 

Utilize first responders 

In case of emergency, seek any police officer, security or emergency services personnel in your vicinity. If you do not feel safe, please use these first responders. They are onsite to help. Let them help you. 

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