I Declare to Prepare
Calling out all nonveteran Festival goers. I see you packing over there & freaking out if you’re ready for the camping festival or if you’re under prepared. Many of us have been there and I’m here to tell you…
It is okay to going to be O.K.
For our first festival, my friends and I, by far, didn’t pack nearly enough. But, with each festival, came wisdom and some of the nuttiest logic known to man. Making my group of friends and I better and better with each fest. Trust me learning what to bring by trial and error has made me quite the planner of every festival group I joined. Don’t worry if you are in the same shoes I was three years ago, I’m here to make you the planner your grade school teachers wished you were.
Let’s take a time machine back to Summerset Camping and Music Festival 2013 (SSMF), Somerset, Wisconsin. Festicrew (6 of us) were all piled up in 1998 Jeep Cherokee. Every single square inch had been filled. Skin to skin contact along with backpacks, camping, essentials, and goodie bags tactically hidden throughout my sister’s Jeep. We thought we had enough essentials to last us all for a four-day binger, which we soon learned…. Boy were we wrong.
We arrived, unpacked, and jumped into the lines. Security checked us through quickly and it was evident as we started building our homes for the weekend, we were not up to par. Two tents, two chairs, one cooler, and fourteen blunts for six people. Not to mention, it was the hottest weekend of the year. The blunts were gone within 5 hours, along with the water. Thankfully, our neighbors had a canopy that may have saved us, very well, from LITERALLY melting. As the sun went down our carnivalesque bodies were released. The weekend was tough but one best learning experiences I had ever had.
Fast forward to March 2016, Okeechobee, “The Year of the Earthling” was the year my festicrew did everything right. Four people, two chairs, two coolers, one canopy, tapestries (with our squad name “Queens +Josh”) and enough goodies to last us a month. Being with all females made it a whole lot easier: q tips stocked, toilet paper, sunscreen, etc. From the hard lessons learned through SSMF, I even bought a Camelbak, and an absolute essential not only for yourself but the people you encounter throughout a festival.
Become friends with your neighbors, be caring, and always look out for one another.
This last time I attended SSMF 2016, I had earned myself a gold star on how to properly prepare for a festival. This time I had a canopy, two tents, beer pong set up, a totem, all the essentials, and great vibes. Going into a fest may be overwhelming but if you arrive with great intentions, mindfulness, and respect, you’ll be squared away. All the fun in the world can be had in a safe manner, which is the whole reason to attend a fest. A friendly highfive, a hug, a dance off, or simply asking someone if they need water makes a giant difference.
Drugs, alcohol, and some dirty bass drops are what attract the people but it must not be forgotten us ravers are a community. So let’s treat campgrounds with respect and as if it were our own home. Lastly, the one rule I’ve come to learn… If you find yourself questioning if you need something for a festival, bring it!
Image Credit: Joshua Vor