Dreamville Fest Guide: Everything you need to know about attending the festival in Raleigh

By Grant Golden

March 30, 2022 (updated)

Photo: Dameon Morris / Dreamville Fest

With its 2019 inception, Dreamville Festival instantly became one of North Carolina’s premier destination events. With the inaugural showing drawing 40,000 attendees to Raleigh’s Dorothea Dix Park, festival goers were immediately clamoring for a follow-up to the multi-stage festival curated by NC hip-hop icon J. Cole. Now, three years out from the first festival, Dreamville takes over Dorothea Dix once again on April 2-3 for what could be a record-breaking event for Raleigh’s tourism and visitor spending. 

This year’s lineup boasts some of the most acclaimed contemporary acts in hip-hop and R&B like Lil Baby, Ari Lennox, and Kehlani while also hosting some remarkable throwback sets like DJ Drama’s Gangsta Grillz (featuring Lil Wayne, Jeezy and T.I.), Ja Rule and Ashanti, and newly added Wiz Khalifa who will be performing his classic mixtape, Kush & Orange Juice. Few regional festivals are capable of the star power of Dreamville, but there’s a lot more offerings from this year’s festival than the sets at Dorothea Dix.

Dreamville is engaging with a slew of venues around Raleigh to create a week full of pre-shows, panels, social mixers, and more. Whether you’re looking to get your mind right with meditation, catch a buzz at a pre-game pop-up bar, or soak in knowledge at DJ and producer sessions, there’s a little bit of something for all the Dreamville fans making their way to Raleigh.

Check out some of the week’s highlights and helpful festival information below:

Dreamville House

Junction West (310 S West St.)
Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 1:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Tickets: Free

Pop-up bar with DJs and Drinks featuring DJ Drkmttr, Micky Slicks, DJ Paradime, Luxe Posh, Chocolate Rice, and more.

Dreamville Public Access

CAM Raleigh (409 W Martin St.)
Friday from 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Tickets: Free 

A day full of workshops and panels from some of the region’s most revered creative minds.

12 p.m. – DJ 101 with DJ Paradime
1 p.m. – Corsair Gaming Lounge 
2 p.m. – Carolina Creative Panel with Lute, Scott Lazer, Vic Blends, and DJ Fannie Mae hosted by Ashia Skye
3 p.m. – Beat Breakdown with Elite & Groove
4 p.m. – Sound Bar – Producers Panel with Elite, Groove, Kal Banx and Christo

 

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Everyday People Dreamville Festival Opening Party

The Dillon Sky Terrace
Friday, April 1 from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Tickets: Free with RSVP

UP with OLU + ZIZI

The Dillon Rooftop (223 S West St.)
Thursday and Friday from 9:00 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
Tickets: Free (with Dreamville Fest ticket)

Yoga and Mindfulness Meditation with Olu from EarthGang and Zainab Hassan. 

More Dreamville Fest weekend events: 

Love Jones – A Party for the Love of Music & Vibes 
Killjoy (116 N West St.)
Friday, April 1 from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Tickets: $20

Billed as a “music lover’s social,” Killjoy will feature DJs playing hits from the 90’s and 2000’s so you can dance your way into Dreamville Fest weekend.

Rhythm Waves Vol. III ft. Imani Pressley, DL Zene, Ja Renee, and Tiyane
The Pour House Music Hall (224 S Blount St)
Friday, April 1 from 9 p.m. to 12 a.m.
Tickets: $12 – $15

Heavy-hitting all-female lineup including remarkable producers, hip-hop acts, and sultry R&B songsters.





Big Dreams Concert & Conference
Lincoln Theatre (126 E Cabarrus St)
Event Conference: 2-5 p.m. / Concert: 7 p.m. – 12 a.m.
Tickets: $20

A two-part all-day event split between conference and concert featuring a panel on the music business including networking, a media room, and performances from Sino, Sonny Miles, Shame Gang, Foreverjabron, Champ Adom, Surfspazz and more.

Artspace – April First Friday
Friday, April 1 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Artspace (201 E Davie St.)
Tickets: Free

A celebration of Dreamville Fest and hip-hop culture. Browse their art exhibitions inside or showcase your dance or rap skills in open style cyphers hosted by Raleigh Rockers and Cypher University. 

Dreamville Fest 2019. Photo: Garrett Poulos

Parking

Official parking for the event is at NC State’s Centennial Campus, located across the street from Dix Park on a first come, first served basis. Cost is $30 and you can reserve in advance here

Transportation

Not trying to worry about leaving your car and battling traffic on the way out? Dreamville offers plenty of shuttle options, ride-share pick-up locations, or bike parking areas.

  • The downtown shuttle costs $20 for a two-day pass, and will pick up from Moore Square in Downtown Raleigh. Shuttles run continuously from 10:30 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. 
  • If ride-sharing is more your speed, Uber, Lyft and Taxis all have designated drop off/pickup zones on either side of Dorothea Dix Park (both Centennial and Western Blvd/Boylan).
  • For attendees biking or walking, the festival has two locations for bike parking near the entrances. One at the corner of Centennial Pkwy and Blair, another on the corner of Western Blvd and Hunt Dr.
  • Coming from out of town via train? Travelers coming to and from Dreamville can save 25% via NC By Train tickets. You’ll arrive at Union Station, two miles from Dorothea Dix Park, and can book tickets with the discount code V681. 
Photo: @MadeNChynna

Lockers 

There will be lockers available on site to safely store belongings, and you can reserve in advance here. You will receive an email 24 hours before the fest containing your locker location, locker number, and lock combination. 

Bag Policy 

All festival attendees will be subject to a search of their person and any bags or belongings being carried into the festival grounds. 

  • ALL bags will be searched before entry. 
  • Small clutch purses and fanny packs that are 4.5″ x 5.5″ or smaller do not need to be clear, but can have no more than one pocket.
  • All other bags must be fully CLEAR and made up of clear plastic, vinyl, or pvc, and be no larger than 12″ x 12″ x 6″ ONLY. Bags will be restricted to small purses, totes and drawstring bags only. Backpacks and bags with multiple pockets are prohibited. 
  • Hydration packs are allowed and do not need to be clear, but must be emptied of all liquid and have no more than two pockets in addition to the one holding the water reservoir.

Music Schedule

Merch 

In an effort to reduce lines at the event, Dreamville Fest is allowing attendees to pre-order festival merch online up until Friday, April 1 at 12 p.m. to pick up at the festival.

For more information about the festival, download the official Dreamville Fest app or check out the website.




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