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No cold feet: Shoes your own ACL adventure

Eric Pulsifer

With the ground at ACL Fest spongey and wet, many day two attendees opted to shed their shoes this afternoon.

“My feet are a busted mess so I’m not worried about it,” second-time festival-goer Sammy Rosado said when asked if he had any hesitations before going barefoot. “Besides, it only happens once a year, so why not?”

With a tallboy in hand and his sandals strapped to his backpack, Rosado is in from San Antonio to catch Lana Del Rey. After stepping outside this morning, he made an REI run for a jacket and a waterproof bag. He ditched his sandals after arriving at Zilker Park just after noon.

Nearby, David Olson was also a part of the barefoot brotherhood. Olson is visiting from Walnut Creek, Calif., for his first ACL. His must-sees all happen to be playing today (Mac DeMarco, Tune-Yards and Eminem) so the chill in the air and mud on the ground didn’t give him pause. “The weather didn’t change my gameplan at all,” he said. “It was muddy so I took off my shoes. It feels nice on the feet.”

Over by the food court, Shayla Born of Augusta, Georgia, is standing high and dry thanks to packing like a pro. After dealing with a rain-soaked weekend at last year’s Music Midtown festival in Atlanta, she made a point to bring rainboots for this weekend, her first ever ACL.

“We made panchos out of trashbags, and I was stuck in crappy shoes [at Midtown Music], so I came here ready for anything,” she said. “It’s awesome. You can just walk through all the puddles.”

For the less-than puddle prepared who need to ditch the soggy shoes after arriving at ACL but fear going bare, the ACL market might be worth a visit.

Sophie Eckeich is a native Austinite and co-founder of Teysha, an Austin shoe store that sells boots and flats mixing classic styling with Central American textiles. Teysha has had a tent at ACL for three years now. During drier days, they often see festival attendees upgrade from flimsy flip-flops to stylish flats, but today boots are the belle of the ball. “We were nervous about the rain, but it makes for good boots weather,” she said.