Conquering music festivals

Amanda Goldsmith

Devoted music fans can relate to the struggles of arriving at concerts, waiting eight hours, getting so sweaty our clothes stuck to our skin, and being left at the back of the crowd, barely able to see the performer. As somebody who has experienced music festivals in a variety of ways, from getting front row to almost passing out, I’m here to tell all first-time festival goers how to conquer your future music festival experiences.

We’re all familiar with Austin City Limits, but how do you get to see everyone you want? The answer is quite simple —  you can’t. Even with the event spanning two weekends in October, it is likely that two of your favorite bands are playing at the same time. So just be prepared, you might not be able to see everyone you want. Compromise is key.

The first thing that you should do before you get to the festival is figure out who you want to see the most. Make sure you also know when and where they are playing so you can get to see all your favorite artists. Create a schedule to keep things straight.

The next thing you need to do when conquering your future festivals is choosing one of these two options. If getting to the front row is more important to you than seeing a lot of bands, then you’re going to have to make sacrifices. If you want to get as close as possible, it is highly unlikely that you will see all the bands you want. It’s better to accept it now rather than cry about it later.

The second option is if you want to see more bands, you’re most likely going have to be in the back of the crowd. The upside of this is that you will get to enjoy a greater variety of bands. More bands means more fun.

Once a plan has been made, one of the most important things that you need to decide is what to bring. At festivals you never want to be hauling around a big backpack or handbag. Packing light is important, so make sure you only take necessities. I recommend bringing a small drawstring bag or a Camelbak so your hands are free and your back doesn’t start to hurt. In your bag some key items that you might need to have are: A refillable water bottle, phone, a small wallet or money clip, ID, deodorant, a protein or energy bar, sunglasses a portable charger, and a hair tie if you need it.

All of these tips will help make your festival experience as enjoyable as possible, and will also keep you from getting dehydrated, smelly and hungry. Having your phone charged will not only help you take videos and pictures, but will also keep you from getting lost or separated from your friends. A small wallet or money clip will make sure you always have money, in case some concert merch is calling your name.

All of this information will help you enjoy whatever music festival you go to from here on out. So have fun!