To Bonnaroo and Beyond: Festival Scene Safety

It’s that time of year again- people are buying their tickets, packing up their cars and road tripping to music festivals across the country. Whether you are headed to rock out at Bonnaroo, chill at The Hangout, or experience Burning Man, here’s a few tips to maximize your experience by staying safe (and hydrated) while you groove to the music.

Before you go:

  • Rest up. Get your body ready for days of little sleep and lots of heat.  Get lots of rest and eat well the week leading up to the festival.
  • Leave your valuables at home.  Theft is a common crime at music festivals, so if you need to bring valuables keep them on your person or locked safely in your car.
  1. Pack appropriatelyIn addition to your camping supplies, don’t forget key essentials such as sunscreen, water, and a first aid kit.  Pack appropriate clothes for the weather in the area (some places, like Burning Man, are HOT during the day but can get COLD at night). Other good items to pack are:

— Emergen-C or some other vitamin enriched product to keep your immune system happy.

— Light- don’t go stumbling around in the dark, bring flashlights/batteries.

— Your cell phone charger. You want to be able to get help in an emergency, so keep your phone juiced up.

— Earplugs. Yeah, they aren’t the coolest thing, but they’ll keep your hearing intact for the next 40 years.

— Naproxen.  A pain reliever that doesn’t interact badly with alcohol (like acetaminophen or ibuprofen).

At the festival:

  • Make a plan.  Plan ahead with your peeps about what you all will do if someone gets lost, hurt, injured, etc.  It is helpful to have one person who remains (relatively) sober for these situations- take turns taking care of each other.
  • Get to know your neighbors One of the greatest parts of the festival scene is the community atmosphere.  Get to know the people staying around you.
  • Know where emergency stations are.  Seems like a “duh”, but on large festival grounds it is good to know where the closest station to you is in case you need it.
  • HYDRATE.  Seriously, drink lots of water.  You don’t want to be passed out from heatstroke when the band you’ve been waiting for finally comes on.
  • Pace yourself.   Make sure to get some sleep, eat regularly and give yourself a break.
  • Getting buzzed?  Be safe.  Alcohol and other drugs are commonly found at music festivals.  Use risk reduction strategies to keep yourself as safe as possible.  For good tips on alcohol/drug risk reduction go here:

Following these tips may not be the coolest part of the festival scene, but they will allow you to have FUN and enjoy every minute of your experience!

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