Music Festival Survival Guide

Music Festival Survival Guide

10 important tips on "music festival season" and how to get through it safely.
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Since I’ve been to about 10 music festivals in my short span of life, and have three more planned this summer; I figured I could share some helpful tips about how you can survive to see your favorite artist in the sweltering 100-degree heat.

Music festivals usually seem intimidating unless you’ve experienced one already. From the amount of people attending it to the ridiculous prices of food and water, you need to be extra prepared for anything to happen.

1. Get your tickets ahead of time.

Really with any concert, you should try to get tickets as soon as they go on sale. They’re the cheapest, and you avoid the risk of them selling out.

2. Bring a friend with you (if possible).

Having a friend with you at a music festival is really a memorable experience. It adds to the excitement of everything going on and it’s just nice to have a familiar face with you. If you end up going with someone, make sure you set up a meeting location somewhere within the festival gates so if you get lost, you can just meet up there!

Don’t worry if you can’t bring a friend. There’s always people to talk to at these events and they’re usually quite friendly. You just might meet your new best friend there.

3. Pack lightly, but pack enough.

I’ve been in situations where I either brought too many things with me or not enough. It takes a while to reach that perfect balance in the middle. Some of my necessities are a portable phone charger, hat, enough cash for food and merchandise, a picture I.D. and sunglasses. Those are the most basic accessories, but they really depend on the person!

4. Prepare for all weather conditions.

“Festival season” is also the perfect time for thunderstorms and rain storms. I highly suggest going to the dollar store and buying a plastic poncho in case you get stuck in the middle of a storm in a big, empty field. It’s lighter and safer than carrying an umbrella.

5. Eat a full meal for breakfast and a lighter meal during the actual festival.

It’s proven that a good and filling breakfast can provide energy throughout the day. I recommend eating a big smoothie with an array of different fruits and a side of toast with peanut butter since that’s personally the most filling type of meal for me. In the festivals I’ve been to, you’re allowed to bring in a small snack such as a granola bar, crackers, things like that. Usually, food at festivals and other venues are higher in price, so I would definitely bring enough extra cash for a meal in case you need it. Be sure to eat afterwards too.

6. Sunscreen is a must.

Sunscreen is good for everyone who's going to be out in the sun. Skin cancer is a serious risk, and applying sunscreen every hour or less is great to protect against this risk. Usually, spray sunscreens are banned from the festival grounds for being flammable, so if that happens, bring a backup of regular sunscreen lotion too. You can never be too prepared!

7. Stay hydrated.

Hydration is key if you’re being outside all day in the heat. The No. 1 reason people get hurt at festivals is because they pass out from not eating or drinking enough. It’s different for each festival, but most likely you can bring in a sealed plastic water bottle and are able to refill it at different free refill stations throughout the grounds.

8. Write down the set times for the artists you want to see.

Phones die so easily that it’s best to carry a paper with all the times and stage names of whomever you want to see that day. You may think your phone won’t die and you can rely on that, but it’s best to have a backup plan.

9. Be careful in crowds.

Heat and crowds don’t mix. If you feel as though you’re usually uncomfortable in crowds, it’s best to just relax and watch whatever artist from the back. Yes, you won’t have the best view but you’ll still hear everything just fine and will still have an excellent time. If you do venture into the crowd, be sure to have all your belongings placed safely in your bag. Bring a bag that can be zipped up and isn’t that easy to get into by strangers.

10. Enjoy the experience and take plenty of pictures.

Life is too short to not have a good time, especially when you paid a good amount of money to be here at this event! Take some pictures with friends, videos of artists performing, or whatever you feel worthy of remembering in detail in a few years.

Cover Image Credit: Firefly Music Festival

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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Poetry On The Odyssey: It's a Girl

An ode to the little girl raised to be insecure.

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They raise little girls to be insecure

Little girls grow to be big girls

People always ask big girls why they're so insecure

Big girls aren't quite sure

Day after day the big girl can't keep up

She's exhausted

Her soul feels worn

The big girl learns to grow hard

In a way, she's a bit stronger

People call her a bitch

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How can she let that affect her

It's simply the only way to be her

She mourns that little girl

Hoping that one day

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