music festival, fsu, lifestyle, things to do, okeechobee

Let's get Groovy: Top 5 of Florida's Hottest Music Festivals

Having trouble figuring out which festival to save up for next? No problem.


Pack up your bags, save up your summer tip money, and let's embark on a vibrational journey through the grounds of the freshest Florida music festivals of 2018-2019 together. Let's just state that any event evokes its own substantial adventure. Everyone in attendance is insouciant and expressive of all the musical intentions that brought them there. Dance like no one is watching, because nobody is. Everyone is in their own metaphysical universe because the energy of the crowd and the performing artist both produce such an unbreakable bond of courtesy and love. Strangers from all over the world come to this one spot to engage in the passion for similar musicality. The second the event attendant scans your ticket for entry inside, the culminations of all of your worries, anxieties, and negative externalities are left outside the fence. Watching the faces of strangers all coming together synchronized to music and positivity made me comprehend the importance of expansion of new perspectives. Passing through the vibrant, bright smiling expressions of my fellow musical comrades and the array of faces and totems pole adorned with decorative figures, I say to myself, I am free, loved, and I sure as hell feel beautiful. The carefree, loving and accepting nature in which these music festivals invoked was exactly the environment I needed to thrive. Any festival that you plan well (not too well, some things need to just flow on their own), will bring immense joy and add to your collection of memories to your young life here on Earth. We grow from the diverse perceptions from others and the supportive accompanying acquaintances we meet on the way. So whether you're trying to get down to some heavy bass with the homies, enjoy a soulful musical experience in an illuminating forest or just dance your heart out like no one is watching, I got you covered on all the best music endeavors your soul craves!

1. What: Suwannee Hulaween Music Festival 2018

Where: Live Oak, Florida

When: 10.26.2018 to 10.28.2018

I'm personally excited to see THREE nights of the String Cheese Incident, Odesza, Tipper, Rezz, the Floozies, and Minnesota just to name a few. This setting is ideal for campers both experienced and not so much, to rejoice in some funky tunes and alluring costumes during Halloween time. I would describe this festival as a free-spirits haven as it's not as mainstream as some of the other festivals mentioned below. Grab your pashmina and let's wiggle!

2. What: Electric Daisy Carnival Orlando 2018

Where: Tinker Field, Orlando, Florida

When: 11.09.2018 to 11.10.2018

As the lineup for this festival hasn't released yet, I can't begin to explain how much fun I had here during 2016's festival. I love the enormous stages, carnival props, light production, and overall vibe here considering this is the quintessential experience when you think of a great weekend with your best friends. Think of Florida County Fair crossed with a mind blowing light show. Headliners never surprise me as I was blown away by Alice in Wonderland and RL Grime's sets in years past. Definitely keep your eye out people!

3. What: Okeechobee Music Festival 2019

Where: Okeechobee, Florida

When: (Estimated date) 2.28.2019 to 03.04.2019

This has been my favorite event hands down for the past two years. This would be the festival's fourth year in production but age is just a number baby! Get relaxed at Yogachobee, hang out by the sand at Aquachobee or catch me at one of the food trucks by the Grove (particularly the artisan mac and cheese sandwich truck), but regardless of where you are, all the artists here are an absolute melodic wonderland. I would definitely recommend this production to anyone trying out their first camping festival or just trying to get wavy for the weekend. Pro tip: volunteer as a promoter and get yourself some free Okee Merch and a possible freebie ticket, I'm already hot for 'Chobee and its only June.

4. What: Ultra Music Festival 2019

Where: Miami, Florida

When: 3.29.2019 to 3.31.2019

Okay, so I'm not gonna lie to you guys this is definitely the most hyped up festival out of my list. That goes without saying that this festival contains one of the most beloved weekends I've ever endured, seriously. Bayfront Park transforms into an electrified utopia, but it's hard to imagine Miami any other way. Take the cobwebs off your kandi and get an overrated leotard from iHeartRaves for this one. KIDDING- but I'm going to say, everyone at some point in their lives should attend Ultra just once, it's absolutely magical and those Deadmau5 beats can make a girl shuffle.

5. When: Sunset Music Festival 2019

Where: Tampa, Florida

When: (Estimated date) 5.25.2019 to 5.26.2019

Get your bandana ready (and maybe your neckbrace) for this bass-boosted trip through dirt terrain of SMF 2019! I actually broke the cartilage of my nose while headbanging to Funtcase back at SMF 2016, and needless to say, this festival isn't for the faint of heart. I would describe the artist musicality to be "as grimey as the venue festival is" but in the best way. Artists such as Excision, Zomboy, Slander, Rezz, Space Jesus, and Hippie Sabotage have graced the stages of this venue and nothing can get much better than that.

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Is Victoria's Secret Promoting Obesity Or Reality?

Society has been so used to seeing skinny models that it's been engraved into our minds as the perfect image


There's currently a debate over companies or brands using plus-size models. Are they glamorizing obesity or giving a more honest vision of a woman's body?

For many years models have always been really thin. Many brands and companies use these thin women as their models; advertising that smaller is better.

Society has been so used to seeing skinny models that it's been engraved into our minds as the perfect image. This is believed to have given young girls and women an unrealistic body standard. This leads to body shaming, self-harm, depression, and eating disorders.

There has been a study on how seeing skinny models everywhere can distort your mind. The study was done in 2017. They had 80 Nicaraguan males and females with little to no internet access. They showed the people a plus-size model and then a skinny model. The people changed their ideal body types after seeing the photo.

Society is brainwashed to believe that skinny is more appealing. A skinny person could wear anything and nobody would question it, but once a plus size person wears the same thing or something similar, they get judged.

Gillette recently had plus-size beauty and fashion vlogger Anna O'Brien represent heir razors. It sparked outrage.

Gillette is getting major backlash for using her for their ad campaign. They are being accused of glorifying unhealthy lifestyles or obesity. Gillette wanted to show that their products are for all shapes and sizes.

The replies to this tweet are truly upsetting. SO many hateful people. It's talking about how obesity shouldn't be promoted or celebrated or how using this plus size women as their mode was a bad idea.

I think Gillette is doing a great thing. They put a woman who is fully aware of her size in their ads. They are being realistic to not only their brand but consumers as well.

This world is becoming so worried about what they're used to that they aren't seeing the truth. Gillette used an actual plus-sized woman as their model, unlike Victoria's Secret.

Victoria's Secret

They introduced a new model named Barbara Palvin is now one of Victoria's Secret angels. She is considered plus sized for them, but she's just a little curvy. Yes, she is more truthful than the past models, but it just bewilders me.

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4 tips to Cut Out Meat from your diet, Cold Turkey

A beginner's guide to becoming vegetarian/vegan in college.


Coming into college, I was exceptionally worried about gaining that notorious "freshman 15."

In high school, I always reverted to being a relatively poor eater as I napped after my numerous fried chicken sandwiches from Chick-Fil-A and indulged on convenient but unhealthy afterschool snack options on multiple occasions. I always felt a slightly guilty feeling after eating what I did, perhaps due to my past experiences with food shaming and bullying for my weight or maybe because what I was eating wasn't good for my body or my mindset.

I had many friends and other acquaintances that had adopted vegan and vegetarian lifestyles throughout the years. It was fascinating to see the plethora of options available to them including almond milks, kombuchas, and probiotics, vegan cheese, vegan eggs, meat substitutes, nutritional yeast, etc. I loved how informed my colleagues were about their health, the environment, and the truth behind where our food comes from. I desired to stabilize an efficient diet for myself that would withstand hours of energy for classes, workouts, and walking around Tallahassee without a car, without all of the extra supplemental caffeine provided by my Redbull.

It was extremely hard cutting out meat entirely as Italian heritage thick runs through my blood and my plate. Saying "no" to nonna's fried chicken cutlets, chicken parmigiana, and penne al la vodka with pancetta was a disgrace. I needed to give this lifestyle change a shot in order to give myself the nourishment I desperately needed. After only a few weeks of making myself fun, plant-based recipes and of course, dealing with some mishaps on the way, I eventually got the hang of this healthy eating thing! After all, I lost 15 pounds and felt like a little ray of sunshine walking on Florida State University's campus. I was able to connect with friends from both my dorm room at Gilchrist and the classroom that were also on this vegan and vegetarian college journey with me and that support was essential for my success.

After a year of solid vegetarianism, I strayed to my moderate meat intake and eventually gained back the weight I had kept off. However, about a week ago on June 18, 2018, I pledged never to eat meat again. Throughout my journey with eating less meat and more plant nutritious items, I hoped to break the stigma regarding vegetarian and vegan lifestyles. No people, we do not just eat grass and inhale air.

I made a Tofurky roast for Thanksgiving 2017 and was actually ridiculed via Snapchat for not being "American" because I chose to not eat a real turkey. I'm not the kind of girl to hound animal activism, environmental sustainability, or vegetarianism/veganism down your throat, so if you read this and don't feel intrigued to try something new, that is totally up to you, your diet is not a problem to me. However, I think it is so utterly important to try new things and give it a chance because how will you ever know unless you try! Even if you just have one meatless Monday, you will cut your overall carbon footprint by 20% and will save nearly 133 gallons of water with each meatless meal you savor. I have gathered a list of overall advice and tips for people considering trying a day of meatless loving or even better, a potential lifestyle of plant-based bliss.

First of all, do you want to try vegetarianism or veganism? Do you know the difference?

Most people get confused about which is which so I'm here to simplify it for you. Vegans do not eat fish, meat, or dairy which includes eggs, and many people do not know that. Vegetarians do not eat fish or meat but still can have eggs and dairy.

Here are some tips for this transition to become more simplified, and less restricted. I found these to be extremely helpful for my journey and urged to pass them along. In the end, do what you want to do! Plant-based foods most of the time are great so please don't restrict yourself. Think "What's going to make me feel my best!"

1. Cooking meals at home is a must, so less takeout food.

  • If you do want to enjoy a meal out with friends, don't mind asking the waiter what options are vegetarian/vegan if it's not explicitly said. I used to feel annoying and petty about asking but please do not. Many of my vegan friends have explained to me about how commonly people have food allergies to nuts, eggs, dairy, etc. and need to ask themselves. Schedule time for preparing meals so you don't feel overwhelmed when you're hit with an endless list on your agenda planner This is an "eat in abundance" lifestyle, so don't cut yourself short from it. Add exciting options that are appealing to try- for example, new milks and meat substitutes. Also, make sure to stay stocked on your favorite veggies, fruits, beans, and rice! I recommend trying out Trader Joe's, Lucky's Market or Publix for some amazing and inexpensive options. The myth is that this lifestyle is very hard to afford but I promise that is false.

2. Take your vitamins!

  • B12 for energy levels and healthy blood cells
  • Vitamin D for strong bone health
  • Vitamin C for immunity

3. Think about why you want to become vegetarian or vegan.

  • Cowspiracy documentary: the impact of the meat industry on the environment.
  • Earthlings documentary: GRAPHIC, shows what the animals go through during the meat process, how they are treated rather cruelly than our preconceived notions that they frolic on farm pastures, look into the fur farm industry, animal shelters, and factory farming
  • Food Inc. documentary: a look inside large animal processing facilities and examines aspects of how food goes from factory to chain restaurant plates.
  • Gelatin research! Read your labels and see what's inside the product your holding. You will be disgusted by how many items contain gelatin base in them which is ground up and boiled animal carcass, bones, and other tissue! I once opened up honey roasted peanuts to see that gelatin was one of the main ingredients.

4. Have a positive mindset about this endeavor, it gets easier with time.

  • Think simple!! Adapt your favorite foods to the vegetarian alternatives. Try Pinterest for vegetarian and vegan meals for ideas! Barnes and Nobles also has a great section of recipe books that are so simple and contain few ingredients
  • Take your time with it. Be slow. Your habits will eventually change. You will adapt to wanting to eat healthily! And its guilt-free (for the most part). Adding one day meatless is completely fine.
  • You don't have to be healthy all the time. Having a vegetarian plant-based diet should already fill you up with the nutrients you need. If you eat healthy 80-90% of the time, you can definitely binge and make some sweets or try some vegan sweet options that make you curious!

Cover Image Credit:

Photo by Lefteris kallergis on Unsplash

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