As the summer music season heats up, thousands will be getting ready for their first festival experience.
Attending your first festival can be overwhelming, and even if it’s not your first festival, we wanted to offer some tips and tricks to enjoy any and all the festivals going on over the next few months.
The great thing about this year’s festival calendar is there’s an event for fans of every type of music. From Firefly Music Festival this weekend in Dover, Del., to Peach Music Festival in July at Montage Mountain in Scranton, the range of music being offered is wide.
June 14-17: Firefly Music Festival, Dover, Del.
This weekend, fans of Kendrick Lamar, SZA, Arctic Monkeys and Eminem will have a chance to see all those artists perform at Firefly. The music festival, which is in its seventh year, has turned into one of the biggest festivals on the East Coast. And with artists in genres ranging from hip-hop to rock, pop and everything in between, it truly has something for everyone.
July 12-14: Camp Bisco, Montage Mountain, Scranton.
EDM fans will congregate to the mountain the second weekend in July for the fourth annual Camp Bisco festival. Put together by The Disco Biscuits, Camp Bisco is touted as a “celebration of electronic and hybrid styles of music.” It is certainly a niche festival, but growing in its home at Montage.
July 19-22: Peach Music Festival, Montage Mountain, Scranton.
Founded by the Allman Brothers Band and featuring folk and jam-band acts, the Peach Festival has become a staple in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Featured acts include Dickey Betts & His Band, Gov’t Mule, moe., Umphrey’s McGee and Phil Lesh & The Terrapin Family Band.
Aug. 2-5: Lollapalooza, Chicago, Ill.
Much like Firefly, Lollapalooza features artists from multiple genres to attract a wide variety of fans. Jack White, The Weeknd and Bruno Mars will take the stage along with dozens of artists throughout the weekend.
Now that you’ve picked your festival, it’s time to pack. The biggest thing is clothing. If you’re camping somewhere, you’re going to be dirty, sweaty and waiting to use a cold, mobile shower. Making sure you pack the right clothes to carry you through the weekend is important.
It is so easy to scroll through Instagram and see Coachella-inspired outfits and want to recreate them, but the most important thing is your comfort. Spending hours walking around in the sun will already take its toll on your body, so don’t add pain to the equation with bad outfits.
Dresses can be a good choice because they breathe easily and can keep you cool. Shorts and crop tops, swimsuit tops and sports bras are also great choices for the same reason. In my experience, as long as the fabric I wear is breathable, I’m comfortable. Once I start mixing in heavy materials (I’m looking at you, denim), I’m less happy.
At the end of the day, make sure you’re wearing something you will be comfortable in for 12 or more hours in the heat.
I would recommend a cute canvas sneaker, as it will keep you comfy and your feet as clean as possible throughout the weekend.
As for makeup, keep it as simple or go as crazy as you want; just make sure the products you are using aren’t super heavy that they melt off your face within a couple hours or clog your pores.
I suggest tinted moisturizers instead of foundation, to keep your skin hydrated and looking flawless. Also, make sure whatever you’re using as a base has SPF in it to protect your skin from the sun.
For the rest of your look, pick your preference. Tons of makeup brands from Colourpop to Too Faced have launched festival collections to elevate your look with super pigmented shades and fun, holographic colors to inspire your looks.
Camping can be a fun activity on its own, if you like the outdoors. For festivals, it’s an opportunity to meet other people who are just as excited for the music as you. If it’s your first time in that environment, it can be overwhelming, but making sure you have the right tools for an enjoyable camping experience.
Obviously, a tent is an important piece of the puzzle. Needing a place to sleep that shelters you from the elements is key to having a good time. Now, sleeping bags, pillows and air mattresses would be on the list. I find having an extra sweatshirt on hand is good for sleeping, because it offers a light layer that can easily take you from hanging out around the grill to sleeping cozily through the night.
Speaking of grills, depending on your budget and food tastes, you might want to pack a small, portable grill. To cut down on food costs, it’s a good idea to pack some hot dogs (or other grill-friendly food that you like), so you have food for late at night. You could pack as heavily or lightly with food as you want. Some people go all-out with eggs, burgers, steaks, etc. Some people eat all their meals inside the festival grounds. The latter can get expensive fast.
In addition to being well fed, hydration is paramount to enjoying your weekend. Dehydration is nothing to play around with and is a dangerous position to put yourself in. Make sure you are drinking plenty of water throughout the day, and bring a reusable bottle. Festival grounds have numerous water stations so people can keep drinking water without having to pay a fortune for it.
If you are of the age to drink alcohol, a great way to cut costs is to bring some beer with you and even some festival-inspired punches. Those will most likely have to stay at the campsite, but are great for pre- and post-concert gatherings.
The other major thing to remember when attending is hygiene and its necessities. The lines for showers can be long and often provide short, cold showers. There are some things you can pack to help you stay as clean as possible in between those showers.
• Baby wipes: The holy grail of festival/camping life. You can use them on your face, hands, anywhere that you need to clean quickly.
• Dry shampoo: Don’t want to go through the trouble of washing your hair? Dry shampoo takes away the oils and can keep hair clean for days.
• Disposable toothbrushes: Remember the commercials for Colgate wisps? Those little beauties come in handy around festivals to keep your breath fresh in a pinch.
• Hand sanitizer: Enough said.
• Sunscreen: I know it’s not a hygiene product per se, but I cannot emphasize the importance of sunscreen enough. No matter your skin tone or complexion, sunscreen is essential to keeping your skin healthy and making sure you don’t put yourself at risk for skin cancer. I’m not kidding; make sure you have this packed.
Reach Brigid Edmunds-Lawrence at 570-991-6113 or on Twitter @brigidedmunds.