There are not many things in life that make me speechless but Lantern Fest one of them. My boyfriend Andrew and I made it a tradition to go to the June Lantern Fest every year as a celebration of our anniversary. We won't have many traditions together, but this is by far my favorite.

Lantern Fest is an outdoor festival where everyone sits in a huge open field huddled around fire pits, eat s'mores, play games, listen to live music, eat some decent food truck food, and light off lanterns. Hundreds of thousands of people go to each fest across the country to join together and experience the magic.

Sometimes Andrew and I, like most couples, get caught up in life and forget to take some time for ourselves and just relax. So Lantern Fest is our time to reconnect and reflect on our past year together. It's easy for me to get caught up anxiously awaiting our next big plans or trips, and although I really do anxiously await Lantern Fest basically for an entire year, Lantern Fest is one of those things that you can easily get caught in the moment during. It takes your breath away and you can't help but be in awe of watching your lantern float away in the sea of everyone's lanterns. A lot of people go to Lantern Fest to honor those who have passed, some go for the pictures, and others go just for the experience. Andrew and I are a mix of the last two. We go to Lantern Fest every year because it became our own little tradition and something that is really held near and dear to our hearts.


Andrew and Emily, Lantern Fest 2017Emily Skane

Lantern Fest has become a really important highlight of our relationship. It's hard to look back at our relationship thus far and not think of our memories at Lantern Fest. Lantern Fest is our favorite date, the day we look forward to all year and the place where I fall in love with Andrew all over again.


Andrew and Emily, Lantern Fest 2018, "two years down, forever to go"Andrew Bell

The pictures honestly don't do it justice. I wish I could describe to you how moving the entire experience is but I honestly can't. If you've never gone to Lantern Fest this all probably sounds like a bunch of BS. I get that. Maybe it's just because I'm a hopeless romantic or overly emotional. (Both of which I proudly am.) But the whole experience really does make your heart skip a beat and your breath get caught in your throat. If you've never gone to a fest, you definitely need to. It is worth every penny and all the aggravation of getting out of the parking lot.

So Lantern Fest, keep being awesome, please fix the horrible parking situation, and we'll see you again next summer!