How to Have Fun While Camping With 35,000 of Your Closest #WayHomies
Summer is my favourite time of the year – no school, hot weather, and it’s music festival season!
Festivals are a great way to pack in a ton of great bands in a short period of time. This summer I was lucky enough to head to WayHome.
WayHome had its inaugural festival this summer, with attendance of 35,000 to catch some big names like Neil Young + Promise of the Real, Sam Smith, Alt-J, and Kendrick Lamar. As a seasoned festival-goer, I get nervous about inaugural years because the organization and amenities may not be in place for the attendees to live in a field harmoniously for three days.
However, the event was executed beautifully—the four stages were close enough to run from Modest Mouse to catch the surprise Broken Social Scene performance. The food vendors were also on point. They sold fish tacos and other trendy foodstuffs from their trucks, and there was a plethora of porta-potties to satisfy the needs of the beer drinking festival-goers.
The crowd was young enough to manage a few nights in a tent without getting a sore back, and they were ready to party. Shows ended at 2 a.m., but music still blasted from cars in the campground until the early morning. If you weren’t ready to be up at 8 a.m.—too bad! Your neighbours were likely already gearing up for the day ahead.
My favourite acts included: Hey Rosetta!, Chad VanGaalen, Girl Talk, Alt-J, The Rural Alberta Advantage, Broken Social Scene, and Kingston’s own Lost Cousins.
A list of some less obvious tips and tricks to help you through the summer 2016 festival season:
- Tickets may seem expensive, but determine the cost per band that you plan to see. If a ticket is $225 for the whole weekend and you see at least 9 acts out of a total of 71 (yes, there were 71 acts at WayHome this year), you’re only paying $25 per band.
- Buy tickets early! I made good use of class time and bought mine during my Torts seminar in February (just kidding…). Tickets are often sold in tiers, with the cheapest tickets going first.
- Bring an umbrella and use it for shade. It was so hot during the day I was worried my skin was going to get as crispy as the yellow grass in the festival field.
- Go old school and make meeting spots and times to find your friends. Cell service is usually terrible or non-existent.
- Bring a spray bottle to mist yourself to cool off. This is also a nice way to make friends if the umbrella tip doesn’t work out for you.
- Don’t bring glass bottles. You can bring beer into the campsite, but you don’t want your 2-4 of PBR bottles to get confiscated. This includes ALL bottles. I saw chia pudding in mason jars taken away from some sad hipsters.
- Bring TP. Enough said.
- Try to rest as much as you can! It’s hard to enjoy the shows when you feel like a zombie. So take naps, stay hydrated, and remember to eat.