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Here's what to expect at this weekend's Beyoncé concerts

Whether you're flocking to the Beyhive or you're looking to avoid it, there are some things you should know.

HOUSTON — Beyoncé's Renaissance world tour has been buzzing across social media, and it'll soon be time for Houstonians to flock to (or flee from) the hive.

The Houston native is set to perform at NRG Stadium on Sept. 23 and Sept. 24. There's already been a Beyoncé sighting in H-Town. She and mom Tina Knowles attended a rebuilding celebration Friday for the Knowles-Rowland center for the homeless. 

RELATED: Beyoncé makes surprise appearance at Knowles-Rowland House ahead of Houston concerts

Whether you're planning (or hoping) to be there - or you're looking to be as far away from the show as possible - there are some things you should know ahead of time.

What time will the parking lot open?

Parking lots will open at 4:30 p.m. The parking fee is $40 per space and there is no in-and-out access, which means once you park, your car will have to stay in the lot until you're ready to leave for the night. The Orange, Red, Maroon, Blue, Yellow, Green and Purple lots will be open with ADA parking available in the Orange, Red, Maroon, Blue, Yellow, Green and Purple lots.

Can I prepay for parking?

Yes, NRG Park is selling parking passes via Ticketmaster. Grab $44 Saturday passes here and Sunday passes here.

When will merch be available?

A publicly accessible merch truck will open outside Bud Light Plaza on the southeast side of NRG Stadium from 12 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Parking fees will apply. 

There will be additional merch vendors inside the stadium.

Where is rideshare pickup/dropoff?

All rideshare pickups and drop-offs (including Uber, Lyft and parents) will be in the yellow lot off Main Street. From there, guests can walk on the pedestrian bridge over Kirby to get to NRG Stadium.  

Limousines and party buses dropping off will enter the green lot through Gate 13 off of Lantern Point.

Will there be road closures around NRG Stadium?

Yes. Starting at 4:30 p.m., Lantern Point will be closed from McNee to Murworth and Murworth will be closed from Lantern Point to Kirby. Then, at 9 p.m., crews will close Kirby from McNee to Murworth and Kirby from 610 to Westridge Northbound. All of those closures will last until the crowd is clear.

Can you take METROrail to the concert?

Yes, METRO rail is an option for getting to the Renaissance Tour shows.  You can get info on on METRO rail here

Will METRO have special shuttles or Park & Rides? 

No. According to METRO, it will open its South Fannin lot as a special event lot. For $20 per vehicle, drivers can park there and ride METRORail to the NRG Park stop for free. 

What time will doors open?

The Bud Light Plaza will open at 5 p.m. and NRG Stadium doors will open at 6:30 p.m. ahead of the concert's scheduled start at 8 p.m.

Will NRG Stadium's roof be open?

No, according to NRG Park managers.

What time will Beyoncé go on stage?

The show is scheduled to start at 8 p.m., but from what's been shared on social media, don't expect the queen to arrive on time.

Based on this Reddit thread from fans who went to her earlier stops, she'll most likely hit the stage sometime between 8:30 p.m. and 9 p.m.

How long will the show last?

Expect the multi-part to run for about three hours. The setlist features nearly three dozen songs spanning Beyoncé's career.

What songs will Beyoncé perform?

There are two parts to this answer: the confirmed setlist and the extra songs that she may or may not perform.

According to PopBuzz, Beyoncé has performed about 30 songs consistently throughout the tour within several different acts. That includes popular "Renaissance" songs like "Alien Superstar," "Cuff It" and "Heated." 

There are also some Queen Bey classics such as "Formation," "Run the World," "Dangerously In Love 2," "Partition" and "Crazy In Love."

Songs that she's performed every now and then are "All Up In Your Mind," "Thique" and her Dubai concert version of "Drunk In Love."

Is anyone else going to perform in Houston?

Good question, but no solid answer as of Sept. 18.

Beyoncé and her House of Chrome have been the only ones confirmed for almost every concert, but there have been a few surprise performances here and there.

One of the most notable ones was when Diana Ross sang during her birthday concert in California. Other surprise openers included rapper Offset, DJ Khaled, Kendrick Lamar and rising rapper Doechii. 

Will Blue Ivy perform in Houston?

Beyoncé's oldest daughter Blue Ivy has been coming to the stage for almost every concert. The 11-year-old comes in for "My Power," perfectly during the line "This that bloodline / On the front line, ready for war."

She also joins the dancers during her mother's song, "Black Parade."

RELATED: Blue Ivy has been crushing it with mom Beyoncé during World Renaissance Tour

How should I prepare for the concert?

1. If you're bringing a bag, it has to be small and/or clear

NRG Park is limiting its bag policy for safety reasons. According to its rules for Beyoncé's shows, you can bring:

  • A clear tote bag no larger than 12"x12"x6"
  • OR A gallon-sized resealable plastic bag
  • AND a small clutch no larger than 4.5" x 6.5"

The stadium is also allowing handheld fans and portable phone chargers, as long as they're roughly the size of a credit card. Water bottles and battery-operated fans are NOT allowed inside the venue. 

2. Be ready for the Mute Challenge

During her song "Energy," Beyoncé will go completely silent after the line, "Look around, everybody on mute." The challenge is for concertgoers to be as quiet as possible until the song continues.

A few cities have done well, but Atlanta's been crowned the challenge winner so far.

If you make any noise during the challenge, don't be surprised if people near you look at you funny.

RELATED: Beyoncé Renaissance World Tour: How Houston can win the popular mute challenge

3. If you're bringing kids, plan ahead

A lot of Houston parents are treating their kids to Beyoncé's concert. Since NRG Stadium is going to be packed and dark once the show starts, make sure they have an ID bracelet in case you get separated. Another option is to write your phone number on their arm.

What is the City of Houston doing for its hometown star?

The City of Houston, Houston First Corporation and Central Houston, Inc., are hosting Hou Run the World - Beyoncé’s Homecoming Party on the Plaza!  The public celebration on Saturday, September 23, 2023, from 6:30 p.m. until 8:45 p.m. will be held on the Plaza at Avenida Houston. The city says the event will feature live music, fireworks and a drone show honoring Queen Bey. The drone show, slated to start at 8:35 p.m., will feature 400 drones "creating Beyoncé-related themes sure to captivate the audience."

Check out this link for more information about the event. 

RELATED: Flashback: 16-year-old Beyoncé and her Destiny's Child bandmates chatted with us when they came home to Houston 25 years ago

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