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Taylor Swift, a white woman with blond hair, stands on a stage in a pink flowing long-sleeved dress looking backward at the camera.
Taylor Swift performs onstage for the opening night of 'Taylor Swift | The Eras Tour' at State Farm Stadium on March 17, 2023, in Swift City, ERAzona (Glendale, Arizona). The city of Glendale, Arizona was ceremonially renamed Swift City for March 17–18 in honor of The Eras Tour.  (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for TAS Rights Management)

Seeing Taylor Swift at Levi's Stadium? Everything to Know, From Parking and Pickup to Prep

Seeing Taylor Swift at Levi's Stadium? Everything to Know, From Parking and Pickup to Prep

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Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour — the one that prompted a Senate hearing about Ticketmaster’s monopoly — finally arrives at Levi’s Stadium on Friday, July 28, and Saturday, July 29.

Swift fans know what that means: It’s time to make the friendship bracelets, take the moment, and taste it with thousands of fellow fans in the Bay Area in Santa Clara, temporarily renamed Swiftie Clara where the pop singer has been named honorary mayor to celebrate her arrival.

More Guides From KQED

If you’re attending, you probably spent a good amount of money on tickets — and perhaps you’ll be spending even more simply getting to it, if you’re traveling to the South Bay from out of town — and you may be looking for a game plan for parking and getting in and out of the undoubtedly crowded, hectic stadium as painlessly as possible. Or maybe you’re a parent or caregiver wanting to look after your kids at the concert. Or you grew up with Swift’s music, but may not be as knee-deep in her lore as her more passionate fans.

We at KQED (including me, who went to the Detroit show in June) got you. Including the specific wisdom of audience members on Reddit on this topic, this guide is divided into sections for logistics, alternative events, and more Swift-specific salutes that might sound embarrassing on paper but will be very fun in the moment. (“Learn to live alongside cringe,” as Swift said herself in her New York University commencement speech last year.)

And remember: If you are a parent or caregiver chaperoning your kids, you’re not exempt from dressing on theme and knowing your stuff. Take it from this dad:

@sophiasternnn IM CRYING @Taylor Swift @Taylor Nation #taylorswift #erastour #metlifestadium ♬ original sound – sofiaeatsnyc

Jump straight to logistics:

… and when you’ve covered the logistics? Dive into our primer on all the Swift chants, references and tour preparation you’ll want for the show. And if you didn’t get a ticket for the show, but still want to participate, consult our list of the Swift-related events and parties happening around the Bay Area in the next few weeks.

When does the Eras show start at Levi’s Stadium? What time does it end?

Taylor Swift’s sold-out Santa Clara shows both start at 6:30 p.m. Pacific Time, and Levi’s Stadium will be open at 2 p.m. for parking, with gates to the stadium seating itself open at 4:30 p.m.

The show has not one but two opening acts: sister band HAIM as well as Gracie Abrams. This means you should get there two or even three hours earlier than you think you should — since getting into Levi’s Stadium can be troublesome.

Swift herself performs for three hours, so expect to still be there close to midnight — or even after — when trying to get home. Jump to information about getting home from The Eras Tour. 

How should I dress for Levi’s Stadium?

While you may have your specific Eras outfit prepared, make sure to dress accordingly for a hot, dry day and check the weather forecast a few days out. The National Weather Service currently predicts highs of near 80 degrees for Friday and Saturday.

Be sure to wear sunscreen and to drink lots of water — you can’t enjoy the concert if you are feeling ill. You can bring sealed plastic water bottles and reusable transparent water bottles into the stadium.

KQED has a thorough guide on how to stay safe during a heat wave, should one arise that weekend.

Levi’s is an open stadium, meaning it will get chilly when the night cools down. This means it’s a good idea to bring a jacket or sweater.

It’s also crucial to consider your footwear. Seriously, wear comfortable shoes, because you’ll likely be waiting in long, long lines to get in, for concessions, and merchandise. You’ll also almost certainly be on your feet throughout the entire performance. With the walk from the parking lot to your seating, and then around the stadium itself, you could find you’ve walked miles in one night. (I personally went as Country Taylor and did not break in my cowboy boots. Driving us home was a painful venture.)

Still racking your brain for fit ideas? Here’s some inspiration (with a heads-up for younger Swifties that there’s cursing in the second video):

@sheeguin In our lover era ✨ #pittsburghtstheerastour #duotaygate #duosversion #taylorswift #erastour #tserastour #erastourtaylorswift #taylorswifterastour #taylornation #taylorswiftedit #taylorsversion #taylorswifttok #taylorswiftchallenge #taylor #swift #swiftie #swifties #swiftok #swifttok #fyp #foryou #trend #viral #ootd #trending #twinning #duoerastour #theerastour #theerastourtaylorswift ♬ original sound – jay

@briannaxrenee SEE U AT NIGHT 2 🫶🏻💕✨ first time at a Taylor concert so excited! #taylorswift #erastour #erastouroutfits #swiftcity #taylornation #glendaletstheerastour #swifttok ♬ ERAS TOUR OUTFIT TRANSITION – paige (willow remix)

@tauruslore rep era >>>> #swifties #swiftok #therastour #tserastour #erastour #swiftok #repera #reputation #bwifties #blackswiftie ♬ HE LET HER DRIVE THE TRUCK – Kaiya

What can I bring to the Eras show? What’s Levi Stadium’s bag policy?

One big thing to know: Levi’s Stadium does not allow non-transparent bags — meaning any bag you bring must be:

  • Clear (i.e., transparent, so the contents within can be clearly seen)
  • No bigger than 12 inches x 6 inches.

The only exception to that “clear bag” rule is for clutches — meaning you can bring a clutch with a shoulder or a wrist strap that’s not transparent but has to be smaller than 4.5 inches x 6.5 inches.

An illustration of the different types of bags approved for entry into Levi's stadium.
Levi’s Stadium’s list of approved bags for entry. (levisstadium.com)

Here are some more things you cannot bring to Levi’s stadium:

  • Cans, glass bottles, thermoses, non-transparent water bottles that are not plastic and not sealed
  • Signs over 11” x 17”
  • Banners and poles
  • ‘Professional’ cameras, video, and audio recording equipment (lights and tripods are also not allowed)
  • Glow sticks
  • Selfie sticks
  • Backpacks

In a previous tweet, Levi’s Stadium wrote it would not permit battery packs with portable external phone chargers.

But in an email Friday morning, Levi’s Stadium seemed to reverse that policy, writing to KQED, “We are allowing portable phone chargers as long as they are about the same size as a phone. In other words, as long as it isn’t a massive battery pack for a computer or professional camera. Portable phone chargers with USB cables ARE allowed.”

What about friendship bracelets? You might have seen talk that friendship bracelets were banned from Levi’s Stadium, after a (now deleted) July 20 tweet from the Levi’s Stadium account that bracelets were “not permitted in the stadium.

Levi’s Stadium reversed this position as of Friday morning, tweeting that friendship bracelets were permitted after all — which the stadium’s spokesperson then confirmed in an email to KQED. Read more about  the tradition of fans bringing friendship bracelets to The Eras Tour.

What else can you bring to Levi’s Stadium to see The Eras Tour? These items include:

  • Sealed plastic water bottles and reusable transparent water bottles
  • Blankets
  • Seat cushions
  • Diaper bags (if you’re accompanying a child)
  • Binoculars

How do I know if I’ve got a good seat?

If you are anxious about anything obscuring your sight of the stage or how you want to get to your seat fast, you can check out the view from your seat using Levi’s Stadium’s Virtual Venue map. Seatgeek and A View From My Seat also are good resources for this.

An aerial phot of a huge stadium, overlaid with graphics illustrating different seating.
You can look at where your seat is on the Levi’s Stadium site. (levistadium.com)

If you are at the side or behind the stage, there may be a silver lining for you. I personally was at the very side during the Detroit show, and got to see the famous bit in which Swift is wheeled on from backstage in what looks like a janitor’s cart.

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What should I know about accessibility at Levi’s Stadium?

Levi’s Stadium’s has an online guide to their accessible services, which includes information about accessible seating and companion seats, bathroom services, elevator facilities and how to request to access closed captioning.

Levi’s says that any wheelchair services should be requested in advance when applicable by emailing mobilityservices@levisstadium.com or calling (408) 579-4610 with your requests.

Keep reading for information about accessible parking and drop-off at Levi’s Stadium. The headline: Blue Lot 1 is not accessible and should be avoided.

What should I know about parking at and near Levi’s Stadium?

Can I park at the stadium itself?

One major thing to flag: According to the Levi’s Stadium website and Ticketmaster, all available parking passes are sold out for both nights. However, there are some parking pass resales on StubHub.

Even if you’ve managed to secure your parking pass, getting in and out of the stadium will be a hassle. Levi’s Stadium will be open at 2 p.m. for parking, with gates to the stadium seating itself open at 4:30 p.m., so plan to get there on the early side. Accessible parking information can be found on the Levi’s Stadium site.

Didn’t snag a parking pass ahead of time? You can check websites like ParkWhiz or SpotHero for non-stadium parking spots nearby, although these will likely still be a long walk — almost a mile — to the stadium. If you’re doing this, be sure to map the route using a tool like Google Maps, to make sure you know how long you have to walk and the shortest route to do so. Some of your walk will be on a gravel path, which can be hard on the feet. Reddit users advised that there may be pedicabs around to take you to the stadium.

Where can I park nearby?

The Santa Clara Police Department is asking people not to park in residential areas. Parking will also not be allowed in the “clearly marked” posted section of Lick Mille Boulevard on Friday and Saturday.

Event related parking will be discouraged starting 1 p.m. on Fairway Glen Drive and Eisenhower Drive on the east side of Lafayette Street. Event parking is also discouraged on Bassett Street, Davis Street, Fillmore Street, and Lake Santa Clara Drive to the west side of Lafayette Street.

What will traffic be like on the day of both Taylor Swift shows around Levi’s Stadium?

You can use this Levi’s Stadium tool to find the best route to the venue, or consult this graphic below from Levi’s Stadium about the best freeway routes to take. Stadium guidance notes that following a navigational tool (like Google Maps) could give you less reliable directions and increase your journey time.

The Santa Clara Police Department released a traffic advisory Wednesday morning on the traffic delays and road closures expected to accommodate the large crowd. According to the release:

  • Heavy traffic and delays are anticipated on major thoroughfares leading to and from the stadium, including Highways 101, 237, 880, Lawrence Expressway, Great America Parkway and San Tomas Expressway, as a result of the event. Expect increased traffic to begin around 1 p.m. and continue through the conclusion of the event and its egress (estimated end time is 11 p.m.).
  • Tasman Drive will be closed from Convention Center Circle to Centennial / Marie P DeBartolo Way beginning at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, July 28, through the conclusion of the event on Saturday, July 29.
  • The off-ramp slipway from eastbound Tasman Drive to Stars and Stripes Drive will be closed except for train station, Youth Soccer Park and Gold Lot 1–5 users, and will remain closed through the conclusion of the event.
  • No parking will be allowed on the clearly marked posted section of Lick Mill Boulevard on Friday, July 28, and Saturday, July 29.  Jump back to more information about parking near Levi’s Stadium.
  • Counterflow is planned in the north and southbound direction to assist with exiting the parking lots. This will affect Highway 237 at Great America Parkway; the highway off-ramps will be closed.
  • In addition, Great America Parkway will be closed northbound from Highway 101 and southbound from Highway 237.

What about using rideshare services like Uber or Lyft to get to or from Levi’s Stadium?

We should note that Reddit users actually recommended against using rideshares, saying that the wait time for one is long and expensive. However, if you are planning on getting an Uber or Lyft, you should be dropped off for the show “curbside on Great America Parkway, between Tasman Drive and Old Glory Lane,” according to the Levi’s Stadium website.

And if you are taking a rideshare out of the stadium after the show ends, exit Gates A, B or F to get picked up at Red Lot 7. (Due to surge pricing, it will likely be expensive to get an Uber out the stadium.)

I’m dropping off and picking up somebody. Where should I go?

Officials at Levi’s Stadium say there’ll be a Special Parent Pick-Up zone available both nights of The Eras Tour, and we’ll update this guide with specific details as they’re released. See the stadium’s existing pickup and drop off information on their site.

According to Levi’s Stadium’s official guidance for parents and caregivers, drop-off for The Eras Tour will be located on Great America Parkway by Tasman Drive and Old Glory Lane.

Pickup will then begin at 10 p.m. on Patrick Henry Drive.

Parents and caregivers may wish to save the map and route directions below:

A graphic illustrating where parents and caregivers should pick up children attending The Eras Tour. (levistadium.com)

Accessible drop-off, with wheelchair assistance available, is at Patrick Henry Drive and Great America Parkway. Blue Lot 1 is not accessible and should be avoided.

How to take public transportation to the Eras concert

Remember: Public transit schedules can always be subject to change. Check the timings for your route on the day of the show itself, and be sure of your very last service home.

Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) light rail and bus

KQED staffers highly recommend taking the VTA light rail to the venue itself. And if you’re taking a connecting transit service to VTA, like BART, keep reading for details of timings and additional services.

There is a VTA stop on the North side of the stadium, called the Great America Station. Routers are “scheduled daily to and from Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Milpitas, San José, Santa Clara, and Campbell.” See the VTA schedule.

Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority is running additional light rail train service (with one past midnight), according to the city of Santa Clara’s news release. You can schedule this journey out on the VTA’s site by toggling to the “Trip Planner” tab.

“Concertgoers headed to see Taylor Swift at Levi’s Stadium this weekend will have access to a greater capacity of transit options than any other event hosted at the venue,” Stacey Hendler Ross, the VTA Public Information Officer, told KQED. “The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority will add 30% more light-rail train cars to the service plan to transport an estimated 12,000–15,000 passengers to and from the concert venue.”

Ross wrote that special service will begin at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, July 28, and Saturday, July 29. There will be extra bus service on standby. Trains are “scheduled to run continuously after the concert to clear crowds as soon as possible.”

In an email update on Monday, VTA’s spokesperson noted that “passengers connecting to BART should take the VTA Orange Line to the Milpitas Transit Center no later than 11:15 p.m. to make their connection on time,” reaffirming that “BART and VTA staff will be in communication to ensure riders are not left stranded.” (VTA’s spokesperson told KQED last week that BART’s last train is 11:51 p.m.)

Caltrain is now running service 75 minutes past the end of the show, “so there is no need to catch an early train to make a Caltrain connection.”

VTA’s PIO recommends people driving to the Milpitas Transit Center to pay for parking permits online or by using the app. Get more information on parking at Silicon Valley BART stations. The Clipper mobile app is also useful for easier VTA light rail payment.

The VTA offers accessible cart or wheelchair services from the Great America station to the Stadium’s west gate. To book these services ahead of time, call (408) 579-4610.

A VTA map illustrating public transit access to Levi’s Stadium (vta.org)

And another reason to support public transportation — there will apparently be free VTA friendship bracelets for 500 passengers on both days. There will also be a photo-op with a cut-out of Swift on the bus and light-rail.

The VTA bus reaches the greater San José area, Mountain View, Cupertino and Sunnyvale (see the VTA bus schedule). The buses will drop you off at either the intersection of Tasman Drive and Great America Parkway or the intersection of Tasman Drive and Calle Del Sol. Please note that accessible cart services are not available for the latter.

BART

BART will be running extra trains on both concert nights. See the details and the schedule on BART’s website.

“Fans will transfer from BART at Milpitas Station to VTA’s Orange Line and ride to VTA’s Great America Station, located on the North side of Levi’s Stadium,” the website reads.

For the way out of the stadium, BART writes that the 11:51 p.m. train will be the last train to make each stop. After that, there will be two special event trains at around 12:30 a.m. and 12:35 a.m. that will make limited stops in the East Bay.

Caltrain

You can also take Caltrain to the Eras show, but will need to connect with the VTA light-rail. You can get a double Caltrain pass here.

According to BART, people traveling from San Francisco should “should take Caltrain home or ensure they take the 11:51 p.m. BART train home. Caltrain is offering an 11:33 p.m. train from Mountain View to San Francisco and a post-concert special service train 75 minutes after the show ends. BART is not keeping any San Francisco stations open beyond normal closing hours due to the lack of parking lots at SF stations and because Caltrain is providing this special service.”

Capital Corridor train

The Capitol Corridor train has special hours just for the Eras concert, but the train leaves at 11:59 p.m. (i.e., a minute before midnight), so be sure to give yourself time to get there. This train provides transportation from Auburn, Rocklin, Roseville, Sacramento, Davis, Suisun, Fairfield, Martinez, Richmond, Berkeley, Emeryville, Oakland, Hayward, Santa Clara, Fremont/Centerville and San José.

ACE train

You can use the ACE train to travel to Santa Clara from Stockton, Lathrop/Manteca, Tracy, Vasco, Livermore, Pleasanton and Fremont.

Biking

Not quite public transportation, but there are also bike valets from the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition (who are looking for volunteers). However, as one Reddit user informed us, the bike trail is often closed during busy events like game days so don’t assume you’ll be able to use this trail to reach Levi’s Stadium on the nights of the Eras shows.

According to the Santa Clara Police Department, “Bicycle valet will be open 3.5 hours prior to the event through 1 hour upon completion of the Levi’s Stadium event.” These are the trails that are available: San Tomas Aquino Creek Trail, John W. Christian Greenbelt Trail/Prescott, Guadalupe River Trail, Great America Parkway, Lafayette Street, Tasman Drive/Great Mall Parkway/Capital Avenue and North First Street.

“For safety reasons the San Tomas Aquino / Saratoga Creek Trail will close at Agnew Road at approximately 1 p.m. on Friday, July 28, and Saturday, July 29,” the website states. “Ticketed pedestrians and bicyclists will be able to use the Creek Trail to access the stadium for this event beginning at approximately 2 p.m. each day.”

Private shuttles

You could consider looking into a private ride or shuttle to and from Levi’s Stadium, especially if there’s a large group of you going — just be aware that a lot of these services may already be booked up.

Private M Ride round-trip shuttles are offered to Levi’s Stadium from Westwood, a venue in San Francisco, with tickets on Eventbrite for both night one and night two of The Eras Tour.

You may also find personal, official guides to getting to The Eras Tour using public transit from Bay Area Swifties out there online, such as this Google Doc from Libby Nachman — a fan who’s also a transportation planner by day, who got in touch with KQED with her own advice about public transit to the show — or Tik Toks like this. (Just be sure to verify any information you find online from unofficial guides like these.)

Prepare for a super-crowded stadium experience

There’s no shame in getting a little antsy at the big crowds. In a packed stadium, it’s normal to get a little overwhelmed.

While there have been no reports of crowd crushes at Swift’s concert, it doesn’t hurt to be careful. According to Mehdi Moussaïd, a research scientist in Berlin who studies crowd behavior, rely on your instincts and senses if you feel like the crowd is getting too dense. If you get stuck in a crush, move with the crowd and put your arms out in front of your chest and hold them there.

“In this position, you would have some space, just a little bit, to push for half a centimeter or just 1 centimeter — enough for you to keep breathing,” Moussaïd said to NPR in 2022. “It’s not going to be comfortable. You’re going to be feeling really bad, but at least you’ll survive.” Read NPR’s full guide on what to do if you find yourself caught in a crowd crush.

What to know about using the bathroom at the Eras shows

You can find all of the bathroom locations at Levi’s Stadium here. Warning: These lines will be long.

You should consider building in a bathroom visit 45 minutes or an hour before Swift gets on stage, if you are already in the stadium (and you should be).

Alternatively, as one KQED staffer recommended, you can also sift through the Eras playlist and see if there is a song you may be comfortable ducking out of to run to the restroom.

For what it’s worth, according to recent reporting around The Eras Tour, stadium bathrooms often become all-gender during these shows — albeit unofficially.

Can I tailgate at Levi’s Stadium if I didn’t get tickets?

Tailgating is probably not the first thing you think of when thinking about concerts. But many fans who didn’t get tickets have been outside the stadium, throwing a parking lot listening party in other cities. Plus Levi’s is an open stadium, and many on social media report that the noise leaks out if you’re nearby.

But a Levi’s Stadium spokesperson told KQED that tailgating is prohibited for the Eras concerts, and that there are no designated viewing areas outside Levi’s Stadium. The spokesperson said fans without tickets are not able to get in the parking lot and should not plan to gather outside the stadium. There will be road closures on Tasman Drive on Friday morning, the 28th, and enforced through the weekend.

Levi’s Stadium’s security information confirms that “Fans without event tickets will not be permitted to congregate in parking areas or on the streets,” and that stadium staff will be working closely with local police “ensure orderly access for ticketed fans, emergency vehicles, and to provide a safe environment for fans and event staff.”

Santa Clara Councilmember Kathy Watanabe told NBC Bay Area and the San Francisco Chronicle that she believes the stadium doesn’t have control over public streets in the way, and that fans should be able to tailgate outside Levi’s Stadium to hear the music. But on Thursday morning, KQED’s email to Watanabe’s office requesting more information on what fans should do around tailgating was met with a reply stating that her office had “been asked to forward all requests to stadium management as the[y] are responsible for replying to questions like yours.”

Whatever you do, please remember: If you are drinking, please don’t get behind the wheel, and establish a designated sober driver instead. One fan tragically lost his life after the Eras concert in Houston when he was struck by a drunk driver.

Can I still get a ticket for The Eras Tour at Levi’s Stadium?

Godspeed!

You may try your luck on services like Facebook marketplace resales, Eventbrite, or even Ticketmaster itself. The Better Businesses Bureau issued a warning about resale scams, with many people discovering after sending the money through apps like Venmo or Zelle that these “tickets” never existed. Check out the person’s profile and their past posting history to see if it seems real. And if you do choose to buy a resale, use your credit card, says the BBB. This at least provides some protection for you if the deal was fake.

If you are getting a resale from a friend, make sure you call your friend directly — to make sure someone isn’t impersonating them online.

Official tickets for the Levi’s Stadium Eras shows are reported to be 100% sold out, so if you see a ticket online for under $500, it may be a scam.

The Taylor Swift subreddit had a trade and resale thread. Sometimes it works out for folks. But again — be careful. (Also good rule of thumb: Some tickets aren’t transferable until a week or so before the concert — meaning that you can’t transfer a ticket far ahead of time.)

What should I know about buying Eras merchandise in the stadium?

You can check out all of The Eras Tour merch ahead of time. There are pros and cons of getting the merch online vs. in person. Cons: If you buy online, shipping can take a while. If buying in person, you’ll be waiting in long lines. Pros: When you buy online, there is a 15%-off code, often with the city’s name included. In person, there are some exclusive to the concert, like the beloved blue crewneck.

There will be several merchandise booths open in the stadium — and the lines will be mind-numbingly long, so expect wait times close to an hour. You will have a lot of downtime in the beginning of the concert, although you might be reluctant to miss HAIM’s opening set to go buy your merch. Not all of the booths will have all of the quarter-zips and sweaters you want, so make sure to check what’s on display before you get in line.

There is a pop-up merchandise booth open on Red Lot 1, Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday beginning at 2 p.m. Levi’s Stadium says it will not allow fans to start lining up before 8 a.m. There is limited parking, so the stadium’s post encourages fans to take public transportation.

According to Levi’s Stadium’s Twitter account, show day merchandise sales will begin at 2:00 p.m. and will continue until the end of the show. Merchandise will be located in Red Lot 1 (and also inside the stadium.) However you can’t park in Red Lot 1 if you don’t have a ticket. Levi’s Stadium wrote that fans will not be allowed to line up earlier than 2:00 p.m. (If you brave the lines, bring water.)

You may want to be careful when trying to wash your new merchandise, however. After many fan complaints of ink fading or bleeding after one wash, Swift’s website released a care notice and called the T-shirt’s look “distressed, vintage” — although in extreme cases, the Swift team say they’ll consider sending a replacement if you bought it within 30 days. This has led to many fans ironing on parchment paper on their T-shirts, letting it cool before putting it in the washing machine inside out, alone, on delicate cold water to protect the ink.

How to prepare for The Eras Tour — especially if you are not online

Swift and her fans are incredibly online — and as a result, the in-jokes warp and evolve into Easter Eggs and Taylor-lore embedded in her songs, music videos, posts, and live performances. What follows is a quick rundown of some of the highlights of these new traditions at the concert that are almost certainly in store for you at the Eras shows at Levi’s Stadium — and to ensure you enjoy yourself as much as possible.

One thing that becomes evident during the Eras concert is Swift’s penchant to mythologize herself, with references and clues — and she loves clues — weaved seamlessly into her performances. She is, you could say, like the Marvel Cinematic Universe in one person.

Here are some things you may see from fans, whose excitement will be dazzlingly infectious. (As my favorite write-up of The Eras Tour, from The New Yorker, states, “Every person I spoke with at the show was the nicest person I’d ever met. The security guards, the hot dog salesmen, the bartenders, the audience. They were all so nice that I found myself manufacturing excuses for interaction … .”)

A primer on the friendship bracelets

You might have seen talk that friendship bracelets were banned from Levi’s Stadium, after a July 20 tweet from the Levi’s Stadium account that bracelets were “not permitted in the stadium.” However, Levi’s Stadium appears to have reversed this position as of Friday morning, tweeting that friendship bracelets were permitted after all — which the stadium’s spokesperson then confirmed in an email to KQED.

The backstory: Inspired by her song “You’re on Your Own Kid,” fans have been donning hand-made friendship bracelets with lyrics and deep cuts scribed on them — not just for wearing at home, but for bringing along to Swift’s shows. So at the Eras concert, you’ll likely be trading bracelets with other Swifties while you are waiting for the show to start or in the concessions line. Make as many as you are comfortable with, but a handful would be good so you have enough to give out.

Given the bag policy at Levi’s Stadium, you’ll probably need to either wear your bracelets or put them in a clear bag (it can be a Ziploc, too).

Children’s bracelet kits are likely your more cost-effective way to make a bunch of bracelets. There’s also a pricier option on Fillmore Street in San Francisco’s Pacific Heights district called Little Words Project.

A composite image of four photos showing friendship bracelets of different colors.
Bracelets Audience Engagement Reporter Nisa Khan made with her sister, Tajwar Mazhar, ahead of their concert day. (Nisa Khan/KQED)

What are some popular chants?

Traditions have quickly grown during The Eras Tour, with fans yelling out lines that riff on her lyrics in a Rocky Horror Show-esque way. Here are some of them, if you are there and were wondering when everyone got the memo (on TikTok).

If this is all sounding like a lot to learn — or you’re wondering how on earth you’re going to explain all this to non-Swifties you’re going to Levi’s Stadium with, here’s San Francisco TikTokker Arden Alexa trying to get her parents up to speed:

@arden_alexa wait for the cruel summer one they went so crazy #swiftieparents #momanddadoftiktok #erastourprep #badbloodtaylorsversion #antiherotaylorswift #cruelsummertaylorswift #cruelsummerbridge #erastourtaylorswift @taylorswift ♬ original sound – arden alexa

The surprise songs

Every show, Swift performs two “surprise songs” on stage from her vast discography of songs — one using an acoustic guitar and one on the piano. Every city’s night is unique — and some may be unique to the local area. For example, she played “seven” — which references her birth state of Pennsylvania — in Pittsburg.

Many fans have gotten a kick out of guessing what the secret song will be for Northern California. (Let us know if you have any guesses! Swift tends to rep Southern California in her songs more.) Here’s a list of past surprise songs, if you’d like to whittle it down.

The Bay Area (Taylor’s version) — aka, the Swift events to attend whether you got an Eras ticket or not

Cities hosting the singer have been celebrating Swift in their own ways — with Santa Clara temporarily changing its name to Swiftie Clara. San Francisco may also join in, as Supervisor Matt Dorsey introduced a resolution that would make July 28–30 “Taylor Swift Weekend.” Your mileage may vary if you think this is cute.

Each city also gets its own poster, which will be for sale at the concert and online — the Santa Clara poster was unveiled Thursday.

There will be a fireworks display at 9:45 p.m. at the nearby Great America Theme Park on both nights of The Eras Tour in the Bay Area.

The Humane Society Silicon Valley is putting the spotlight on Lady Swifty. She is a 1-year-old Australian cattle dog mix looking for a permanent home, as this is her third stay at HSSV. You can schedule an appointment to meet Lady Swifty on the HSSV site.

Look at her:

An image of a happy looking dog styled to resemble a Taylor Swift album cover.
Lady Swifty, who’s up for adoption at the Humane Society of Silicon Valley. (Humane Society of Silicon Valley on Facebook)

Parties and events around the Bay Area

You can also play the fantasy football-esque game “Swiftball” on Twitter, which honestly sounds very stressful to me, but there are prizes involved.

Have fun, stay safe, and if you feel overwhelmed afterward, don’t worry — you probably aren’t the only one. Just capture it, remember it.

Tell us: What else do you need information about?

At KQED News, we know that it can sometimes be hard to track down the answers to navigate life in the Bay Area in 2023. We’ve published clear, practical explainers and guides about COVID, how to cope with intense winter weather and how to exercise your right to protest safely.

So tell us: What do you need to know more about? Tell us, and you could see your question answered online or on social media. What you submit will make our reporting stronger, and help us decide what to cover here on our site, and on KQED Public Radio, too.

An earlier version of this story was published on July 21.

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