#MusingMelodies is a monthly series by myself and Danielle of idigmusic.net where we each share our thoughts on a music topic and invite you to join the conversation! Be sure to read both posts (find Danielle’s here), then head over to Twitter and share your thoughts using the #MusingMelodies hashtag.
I officially declare it music festival season! This weekend NRG Park in Houston will be flooded with music fans hoping to see their favorite bands, learn some new music and start the summer off right at Free Press Summer Fest.
And once again, I’ll be happily siting on the social media sidelines as a spectator. Sorry, Houston. You’re just too damn hot and muggy for me to survive a music festival here.
But over the years I’ve been to my fair share of music festivals and whether it’s going to Austin City Limits, Center of the Universe or a small, local festival, I always learn something new about how to make the experience the best it can be.
Want to make sure your music festival experience is the best it can be this summer?
Here are my 7 tips for music festival survival:
1. Pack a snack
And a healthy one at that. I grew up a Girl Scout, so trail mixes are a default snack in my world. My favorite standby is tossing together roasted unsalted almonds, dried cranberries and a handful of M&M’s. I call it Good Groupie Fuel – a little bit of protein and sugar combined with constantly drinking water has the ability to keep me going (and headache free!) at music festivals. Here’s 5 ways you can eat smarter at music festivals.
2. Take it easy on the beauty products
Despite growing up in Texas, I don’t do well in the heat. At all. I never realize I can sweat so much until I’m standing out in the blazing sun, waiting for a band to play. And hey, I love my charcoal eyeliner as much as the next girl, but I’d rather it not be on my cheeks after an hour of festival fun. Make up just isn’t worth it in this environment. That said, I have a few must-have items I always make sure are tucked away in my festival bag – sunscreen, mint lip gloss and baby wipes to name a few. See my 6 fave items for a festival beauty bag.
3. Go in with a game plan
I’m the super nerd who comes to festivals like SXSW, armed with pages and pages of highlighted shows I want to see. A little planning goes a very long way in making sure you actually see who you want to see. How do you do that? Using these 5 tips for making the most of your festival experience.
4. Dress appropriately
And I don’t mean be a granny and cover yourself up – I mean, dress for the environment. It’s hot, you’re in the sun and if your festival is on park grounds you’re bound to get dirty. Music festivals are not the place for cute shoes and dresses you will surely ruin. I love these 5 tips Nikki Dee shared on The Good Groupie last summer.
5. Travel smart
This one is particularly helpful if you’re making a trip to a music festival this summer. Pick a buddy who won’t make you crazy after six hours together. Pack light. Pitching a tent on festival grounds? Bring something fun to decorate and make it feel more like home. Steff Metal has you covered with 5 more tips for traveling to festivals.
6. Carry a festival bag with all the essentials
What’s the one thing you can’t live without at a festival? I always make sure I have my essentials – and only my essentials – tucked away in my bag. Nothing is worse than lugging around a heavy bag all day, much less being the annoying girl or guy with a huge purse or backpack. Here’s a peak at what I carried in my festival bag last summer at Center of the Universe in Tulsa.
7. Enjoy the music
Remember: the reason you bought your festival ticket was to have fun seeing live music with your friends. Don’t let the crowds, food prices, hot weather or anything else get you down (too much). Enjoy yourself and make the most of your experience.
What’s your best music festival survival tip?
Share it in the comments – or feel free to elaborate on one of my points! Don’t forget to stop by and read Danielle’s killer tips, written fresh off her trip to the Beale Street Music Festival in Memphis.
For more music festival posts, check out last year’s “How to do music festivals smarter” series by following any of the links above.