For most alternative music fans in the UK, Slam Dunk Festival has been a rite of passage for many years.

First taking place at Leeds Millennium Square in 2006 with Fall Out Boy headlining, the festival has since adapted and expanded to become what festival goers recognize it as today. This year, Slam Dunk will axe its Midlands date that has been running since 2013 and instead is focusing on making its Leeds and Hatfield dates as smooth running and exciting for attendees as possible.

Leeds has also moved from its city centre location to Temple Newsam Park for 2019, emulating the move that Hatfield made from Hertfordshire University to Hatfield Park last year. This allows the festival to run more like some of its major counterparts, with more stages, food and drink options, and opportunities to meet your favourite artists.

All Time Low will co-headline alongside Bullet For My Valentine, with such a variety that Slam Dunk organizers no doubt expect will keep everyone covered. The main stage won’t be where the only acts worth seeing are though – bands will play across eight other stages including an acoustic stage, where you can check out the likes of Rob Lynch and Justin Pierre, and the Punk in Drublic stage which will host all your punk and ska needs.

Historically described as the UK’s answer to the Vans Warped Tour before the latter ever made it on to these shores, Slam Dunk has been a melting pot of awesome since its very inception. With so many great bands in such close proximity, it should come as no surprise that they are often huge collaborations and extra special sets throughout the day. Truthfully you couldn’t ask for more for your money, and that’s exactly why Slam Dunk has continued to be a popular choice for rock music fans for the last 13 years.

Then there’s the famous (or should we say infamous) afterparty. For festival-goers who are 18+ and not at all ready to go home once the bands have stopped, each site of Slam Dunk has its own official afterparty. Hatfield’s will be held at Hertfordshire University’s Forum and Leeds fans will head to Leeds University’s Union, both accessible from their respective sites by shuttle bus. Expect several rooms to get down in, offering a wide range of music so there’s something for everyone no matter your tastes. Also, don’t be surprised if you cross paths with one of your favourite band members…

At the end of the day, whether you’re going to your first Slam Dunk or your tenth this year, you’re bound to have a good time. This festival hasn’t got this far by not being an unforgettable experience, after all.

Slam Dunk Festival takes place on Saturday 25 May at Leeds’ Temple Newsam Park and on Sunday 26 May at Hatfield Park in Hertfordshire. Tickets can still be purchased here.

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