11 Survival Items for Any Music Festival
A can tab pops while sweet country music fills the summer air, mixing with the distant ring of laughter and washers bouncing off wooden boards. It's day one of your first summer music festival.
Day 2: You wake up in a lawn chair, covered in mosquito bites and unable to move because you're sunburnt so badly. Your eyes are swollen shut from the dirt, you're missing a toenail from the fifteen people who stomped across your feet last night, and somehow your favorite shirt got ripped.
Ah summer music festivals - it's been too long.
With their many years of experience, on both the performing and participating sides of festivals, we've asked our red dirt endorsees to share what they need for surviving a summer music festival, and here are the magical items they suggested:
1. Sunscreen: Music festivals are a marathon, not a sprint. Nobody wants to be the lobster who has to stay three feet away from the crowd because of blistering. Lather up.
2. Sunglasses (one pair for each night of attendance): What's the #1 broken item cleanup crews find at festivals (well, other than beads and beer cans)? You guessed it - sunglasses. Buy 'em cheap, and bring lots. These will keep you free from wind, dust, and long, sunny days.
3. Cold Drinks: However much you think you need, multiply that by two. Once you're in the festival spirit, your "sharing is caring" side really comes out. Don't forget lots of ice!
*Be sure to bring gatorades and waters to hydrate throughout the day or you'll pay for it.
4. Sea Breeze Astringent: Rub a little of this on your bug bites to take the itch or sting right out. You can also fill a bowl with water and some astringent, soak a towel in it, and lay the towel over a sunburn to soothe your skin.
5. Medicated Body Powder: This was an idea Randy Rogers Band had that none of the others did. This stuff will cool you down out in the heat. Who knew? Genius.
6. Koozies: The guys who don't use koozies because they "drink fast enough that it doesn't have time to get warm," don't know a thing about summer festival heat. Or maybe they just don't have a good koozie? Comment below with your email address and your favorite summer music festival, and we'll give away a Justin Bent Rail koozie to five lucky winners.
7. Sweat Towels: Now, this one came from Brandon Rhyder, and while he may need them to perform, this is a great idea for those of us in the crowd. It's nearly impossible
to end a festival evening without being a little wet or sticky. You'd have girls coming from all around to use your towels... think about it.
8. Camera: Casey Donahew Band suggested this one, and boy were they right. You never want to miss an opportunity to snap a photo with your favorite stars. More importantly, summer music festivals bring out some real characters. The pictures and videos your camera takes could become the next internet sensation.
9. Cooler: Multifunctional, the festival cooler is one you can sit on, stand on, and use to cool your sacred beverages. Everyone loves a rolling cooler, but out in the dust and rocks the wheels always break. You'd do better to bring a wagon to tote around that cooler. Trust us on this one.
10. Red Bandanas: Who added this one? You guess it - Stoney LaRue. This takes care of sweat, dirt, sun... and getting the ladies. Fun fact: Even though he's known for his signature red bandana, Stoney doesn't go anywhere without black Hanes crew socks.
11. Justin Bent Rail Boots: How do you point out a nube at a festival? They don't wear boots. They also don't leave with their feet or toes intact. Your feet will be spilled on, stomped on, danced on, hell - possibly driven on. Anything is possible at a festival, so wear your boots. (Wade Bowen suggests BR331 and BR211).
Surely we missed something. Comment below with your own festival wisdom, and help the nubes prepare for festival battle.