How To Handle Music Festivals As An Introvert

5 Tips For Surviving A Music Festival As An Introvert

Here is me, here is you, and here is how much space I need to get carazayyy!

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Almost everyone in the world enjoys some type of music, but not everyone loves the crowds, smells, bright lights and insane decibel levels that come with many live music performances. These sights and sounds are only amplified at large music festivals. I recently attended Shaky Knees Fest in Atlanta, GA and very quickly learned how to enjoy my experience without overloading my senses. I wanted to share some tips and tricks I utilized so that my not-so-social butterflies can see their favorite artists live too without needing any extra therapy sessions afterward!

1. Sit in the back instead of standing at the front 

Leaving some distance between you and the action keeps you OUT of the pit of sweaty bodies and IN to what you're listening to! Many outdoor music venues have hilly, shaded areas that are perfect for spreading a blanket and enjoying the scenery from afar!

2. Sunglasses are your best friend 

Don't wanna make awkward eye contact with the 60 y/o man who has had one too many Natty Lights? Put those shades on! Sunglasses can also help diminish the intensity of crazy stage lighting. Plus, if there's any amount of sun exposure at the venue, you're gonna want some extra protection.

3. Carry a small backpack if you choose to enter the crowd 

If you're feelin' fine and want to venture into the audience, a small bag can act as a literal shield between you and that person who's standing a few inches too close. It's not rude, it's just providing you with a small amount of personal space.

4. Go with people you trust 

Bring buddies that you know will be able to support you and your needs and also have a great time themselves! I highly recommend finding people that don't mind a sit n' chill experience rather than moshing at every act!

5. Take care of your body!

Hydrate, consume as many calories as you burn during the day, and if you're tired, REST. Your body and your brain will thank you for keeping it safe and healthy during what is basically a music marathon!

The bottom line is: do what you know is best for you as an introvert and don't do anything that isn't. You know your limits and you can set boundaries. Music is for everyone, and everyone should be able to come together to enjoy one of life's greatest gifts!

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6 Tips To Surviving A Music Festival In The Rain

Don't let the rain stop you from enjoying the day!
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Labor Day weekend... a time for relaxation with friends and family during your last real weekend of summer. Just like last year, I decided to spend my Labor Day weekend at the Budweiser Made In America Music Festival which takes place in Philly each year. However, instead of experiencing beautiful weather, it rained. And by rained, I mean down poured all day on Saturday. Being that this was only my second music festival ever, I really had no idea what to expect when the weather was less than perfect. So here are the six tips and tricks I learned about how to survive a music festival in the rain.

1. Wear rain boots

If you learn ANYTHING from this article, it has to be this. Wearing rain boots was the best decision I made all weekend. Not only do they keep your feet dry, but they also protect them from the mud that will eventually build up from the constant rain. Rain boots are built for slippery conditions are sure to help you navigate the festival site. Yes, they may not be your comfiest pair of shoes, and yes, your feet will hurt by the end of the night, but that is better than destroying a pair of shoes AND having soggy socks!

2. Pants or no pants?

My opinion? Definitely no pants. Wear shorts, a dress, a romper, really anything you can think of but try to avoid long pants. This sounds weird but trust me. It will be so uncomfortable walking around in soaking wet, mud covered pants all day. It is better just to skip the pants and wash your legs later.

3. Rain Jacket + Poncho

I know you may not think you will need both, but you will. After a few hours, even my nice rain jacket was soaked through. But wearing your rain jacket with a poncho over it is guaranteed to keep you dry... or at least dryer than you would have been without the two!

4. Comfort > Style

In reality, music festivals are half about the music, half of the outfit. I get it. You want to look cute. It makes total sense... except when it comes to a rainy day. No one looks good when they are soaking wet, regardless of the outfit under neither their rain jacket. So definitely go for comfort if the forecast calls for rain and you'll be so much happier.

5. Bring garbage bags

If you want to keep your belongings nice, dry and working, bring a garbage bag along with you. I brought a backpack and put all of my belongs (portable charger, phone, wallet, snacks, and more) in it, tied the bag up and saved them from the rain. It works perfectly and doesn't take up any room!

6. Embrace the rain

The rain sucks, but you know what, embrace it! You made it to the festival, you spent money on tickets, transportation, and clothes and you can't control the weather so try to enjoy what you can. It will be a funny story to tell later on and I am sure you will at least have a little fun while being there. I thought it was going to be a waste of a day but I really did have a great time and a memorable one too!

Cover Image Credit: Emily Washbourn

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Pharrell Williams Lights Up Napa's BottleRock

"Yezzir."

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If we want to take a pair of binoculars and zoom into one specific moment in my most recent trip to California, then the focus should stay onto BottleRock Napa. While the name itself gives away where this was located, it does not elicit the weather, food, music, and vibes – as we all know, I have a soft spot for music.

Day 2, Saturday (May 25th), included artists such as Sir Sly, Gary Clark Jr., Cypress Hill, Juanes, White Panda, and Pharrell Williams. A music festival in Napa Valley lives up to the perceived expectation – Michelin-star chefs and food vendors, wine galore, liquor, craft beers (IPA heaven), and a beautiful landscape. This is quite a difference from Chicago's Lollapalooza or Milwaukee's Summerfest, which mind you, there is no ill will for those festivals – but BottleRock poses its experience in a league of its own. Such a league includes an older age demographic of attendees, a "one-of-a-kind" location (for the US at least), and the non-festival route musicians — many of which are included above - and that was only Saturday.

As far as shows of the day, Pharrell Williams takes the cheesecake with his "mini-N.E.R.D. reunion" with Shay Haley, amongst his vocal featured classics "Gust of Wind," "Get Lucky," "Drop It Like It's Hot" and plenty more. His singing, even at age 46, came with grace and passion; start to finish, with little to no technical difficulties. The band was incredibly tight, note for note, and the all-female supporting singers and dancers added an element to this show, which I had yet ever to witness. The art and focus on a "performance" could not have been more prevalent in this show.

Pharrell's show is one that goes in the books with the likes of Justin Timberlake, Childish Gambino, The Foo Fighters, The Weeknd, J. Cole, Drake, and Disclosure. It is like the Men's Warehouse saying, "you're going to like the way you look," except Pharrell says, "you're going to like the way you feel, after my show." And that my friends, is a wrap.

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