Lollapalooza ended last Sunday and I had an excellent time. Besides leaving with an annoying heat rash from that thing we call a sun, the experience as a whole was pretty positive for my first Lolla. I recommend volunteering for anyone who wants to go, but doesn’t want to spend the money. It’s ridiculously easy work in exchange for free entry. Now I had the distinct pleasure of working at the Information booth and saw first hand a lot of different ways to fuck up your festival experience. From a girl in tears because she couldn’t find her friends to stolen cellphones to just plain passing out from the heat, basically a bunch of crappy experiences that are very preventable and can be avoided. Read this before you go to your next festival! It could save you unnecessary arguments with security or just remind you to pack sunscreen.
- Water. Water. And More Water.
You will need water. Don’t think you can survive the summer heat without it. Stock up before the festival, when you get to the festival, and know where the filling stations are. I recommend just bringing water. It’s easier and there’s no line. If you need to use a filling station, go waaaaay before your artist hits the stage. You’ll be pissed if you missed half the set from waiting in line. And, no one has time for you fainting on them.
- A Portable Charger Will Save Your Life.
You will be so much happier spending $10-$50 dollars on a portable charger for your phone. You’ll thank me later. Or not. Just get to the festival and see why.
- Dress Appropriately. It’s A Music Festival, Not A Vogue Shoot.
We all want that best dressed festival look. But, don’t forget to be practical. You are not used to being outdoors for long periods of time, while on your feet and constantly moving. Unless you are, but I’m sure most people aren’t. So stick to a lightweight and breathable outfit and some comfy and cute shoes. I wear my docs to every festival. Someone is always stepping on my toes.
- Have A Plan Before Hand.
It’ll make your life a little easier and the festival less overwhelming if you planned out who your going to see and where they’re playing before you get there. Some festivals, like Lolla, actually give you early access to the festival map and who’s playing on what stage. This way your sure to know where to run when the gates open and you want to be front row at one of the main stages. Yes, people actually run when the festival gates open.
- A Great Bag Goes A Long Way.
Whether it be a crossbody, book bag, or fanny pack. A great bag does go a long way. I wore my crossbody, but I wished I had a cute backpack. It would have been easier to stuff all my bottles of water and misc. items inside.
- Have A Designated Meeting Spot In Case Of Lost Homies.
I really hope that girl found her friends. She wasn’t the only one who came by Information looking for a way to contact friends, because they got separated and had all the person’s belonging with them. Including phone and money. It’s so simple to just plan a spot to meet in case something like that happens. Someone can simply say, “Hey. If we get separated lets meet at X.” Everybody agrees and your off to see whoever or do whatever. Trust me, and I speak from experience, there’s nothing more irritating than being in a large crowd of people looking for your friends. Brings back memories of last year watching J.Cole at Made In America. Couldn’t even enjoy the show I was so irritated.
- Glance At The Festival’s Prohibited Items List.
A lot of people came by the Info booth very irritated that this or that got taken away. Read the prohibited items list and spare yourselves the hassle. Also, sometimes security takes stuff not on the list. So it could help to bring a copy to reference if you feel like they’re taking something they shouldn’t.
- Sunscreen, Lots Of Sunscreen.
Now I put on sunscreen. That doesn’t help you avoid a heat rash though, but it does protect your skin from sunburn. There’s nothing worse than red, peeling, painful skin. Or skin cancer.
- Keep Track Of Your Belongings. (YOUR PHONE!)
You are in a crowd full of people. You take a quick photo, put your phone in your pocket, and continue walking with friends. Except, you missed your pocket and your phone fell. Someone sees, picks it up, and just walks off. It takes 2 seconds to look down and make sure your phone is placed safely in your pocket or bag. And, not just your phone, but your wallet, sunglasses, bag, etc. Some people even lost shoes. Just be aware of your surroundings, know where your stuff is, and don’t get too wasted. You’ll hopefully be fine. There are good people that will turn in lost items, but a lot of people (teenagers and adults) will try to make a quick buck off your misfortune.
- Expect Assholes.
They are at every festival. They push you without saying excuse me. They stand in front of you when your sitting and watching an artist. They are the loud, obnoxious, and annoying people that are at every festival. Pick your battles, ignore most of them, and you’ll be fine.
See! That was easy. Enjoy your summer festival!!