Come one, come all to Topeka, Kansas, for the Heartland Stampede Music Festival. Sing your heart out all day and sleep under the Kansas sky right outside the festival gates.
Three days of music and camping await, not to mention some of the best country music acts in the nation. Performers who have graced the stage in the past include Miranda Lambert, Rascal Flatts, Kenny Chesney, Luke Bryan, Taylor Swift, and more. Every year the festival gets better, so be sure to put this popular event on your road trip itinerary this year.
Heartland Motorsport Park is where the action is and you can park your RV amidst the fun to not miss a minute. When you are not at the fest, explore the capital city of Kansas. See what Topeka is all about and be sure not to miss the North Topeka Arts District, and schedule a day of fun at Gage Park. The Evel Knievel Museum is located here, as is the Kansas Children’s Discovery Center.
Visit Iliff Commons Nature Preserve, where you can hike and keep an eye out for an abundance of animals like the bobcat and the fox. Bring your binoculars and a camera in case you see one of nature’s creatures. Plan on seeing more of the state by venturing to Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve in the Kansas Flint Hills.
Attend for one day, or take a three-day package, so you don’t miss any of the great artists performing at Heartland Stampede Music Festival. Pay between $15 and $750 for anything between a child’s one-day pass and a three-day Silver Package plan, which includes a Silver campsite. Choose and book your camping early as popular options sell out quickly.
Watch for signs to the Heartland Speedway and the Heartland Motorsports Park just off of Topeka Boulevard. Route 75 will get you there. You will see some of the beauty of Kansas as you make your way through the state. Look for day destinations like Fort Larned National Historic Site to check out during the week. KanDrive.org will keep you up to date on road alerts and advisories.
Both per entry and weekend passes for parking are available. This gives you space to park your car and access to quick in and out privileges. Overnight parking is not permitted in the vehicle parking lots. Of course, if you want to stay all weekend, look into the various camping options.
For touring around Topeka, there is a bus route; however, this does not extend to the Heartland Motorsports Park. Take a taxi or ridesharing service if you do not want to drive the speedway. RVers who camp on site can easily walk from their motorhome to the festival gates.
Choose your campsite early (booking when you buy your admission ticket is best) if you want to stay on the festival grounds. Sites include Rustic (primitive camping and one vehicle) and Whispering Acres, where the atmosphere is more family-oriented. Both Gold and Platinum sites have 50 amp electrical hookups and septic servicing once over the course of the weekend.
The Topeka / Capital City KOA welcomes RVs and offers free WiFi and free cable TV to entertain the kids if needed on a rainy day. On a sunny, warm day, enjoy the saltwater pool and the sprawling green spaces at the campground. Pomona State Park is south of Topeka and is great for wildlife viewing. Privately owned RV parks can be found in Topeka and the outskirts of the region, so you will have no shortage of places to camp in Kansas.
The camping area of the Heartland Stampede Music Festival is grassy, as is the venue itself. Grab your best pair of cowboy boots and break them in for walking and dancing around the fest. Wheelchairs and strollers may be hard to maneuver if it rains, so have help on hand just in case.
Pack comfy shoes for when your feet need a break from cowboy boots. Sandals may be the ticket for hot days. Shorts and t-shirts are ideal festival garb. A pair of jeans and a comfy sweatshirt are all you need for evenings around the campfire. Bring along rain gear just in case; the concerts will play on rain or shine unless the weather threatens lightning or high winds.
Bug spray and sunscreen are two essentials for festival days and evenings as well as for treks through parks like the Flint Hills Nature Trail. Biking the Eagle Trail, Post Oak Trail, or Switchgrass Mountain Bike Trail, among others, will prove to be a blast. Bring a refillable water bottle to the Heartland Stampede and then pack it in your backpack for the next trail hike.
Keep an eye out on the lakes for toxic algae bloom and don’t swim or allow your pets anywhere the water if it is bright green. A scummy surface is another indication of this harmful substance, It develops rapidly once it starts, and still water is often where you will see it. Other safety measures include staying hydrated at the festival and adhering to fire regulations when making a campfire.
You are asked to bring your own fire ring to the campground at Heartland Stampede. Monitor your fire at all times and keep it contained when cooking. Whenever camping anywhere in the United States, it is a common expectation and often a rule not to transport firewood from one region to another to avoid the spread of invasive bug species. Pack a camp stove and top up the propane in the RV in the event that cooking fires are prohibited due to weather conditions.
If you’re looking for a sandwich, make a stop in Topeka. Pizza is at it’s best, too. Mexican food is popular, and other restaurant finds include French and American cuisine. No doubt, the fresh Kansas air built up your appetite, so be sure to include one of Topeka’s bakeries as a dessert stop. Donuts, anyone?
Support local vendors and grab a bite to eat or a merchandise item. There will be ATMs on site in case you want to take out extra cash for purchases. If you are heading into town during your stay, check out antique shops, art galleries, and flea markets to pick up a unique souvenir of the trip.
Lock your motorhome securely before you head to the festival. Apply sunscreen and bug spray and tote a refillable water bottle to top up at the onsite water refill stations. Outside food and drink items cannot be brought onto the grounds of the event, so be prepared to enjoy tasty festival food if you are staying for the duration. After hours, adhere to the curfews as per your specific campground.
Heartland Stampede Music Festival takes place rain or shine. On a hot day, be sure to rehydrate often and take some shade if available. Pack the camper with clothing for all weather events, including treks after the rain through Skyline Park or a walk through the National Park Historic Site, Brown v. Board of Education.
As you arrive in Topeka, make a stop at one of the pharmacies to top up your first-aid supplies before heading to Heartland Stampede. Buy antibiotic ointment, band-aids, after-sun cream, peroxide, and extra bug spray. Make a mini-kit to bring along on hikes and biking excursions.