By Juan Palomo
If you went to this year’s Free Press Summer Festival then you may be pissed off over how bipolar the weather was over the weekend. One second the sky would be dark and cloudy and the next it’ll be bright and sunny.
Now you’re back home watching the Game Of Throne’s episode you missed while applying aloe vera gel to the red sunburn you thought was a tan. If only there was some sort of guide filled with tips and tricks that you could of read before heading off to the festival. Well, I too wish I had one but not to worry, here is an awesome one for you kids who haven’t had the privilege to get super drenched with sweat and a bad case of sunburn from Free Press … yet.
I hope you find it helpful for the next year’s festival.
Water is your best friend at Free Press! Be sure to bring a reusable water bottle to the festival (though it has to be empty before entering) and fill it up with some lifesaving H2O at one of the many Hydrate Stations located across the park. Regular plastic water bottles are of course sold through many vendors throughout the park but don’t be a fool and throw the bottle on the floor. That’s just so rude and nasty.
This is a huge must bring to the festival. Make sure you don’t reach for the aerosol kind since aerosol is a huge no-no to Free Press. I’ve witnessed security at the gates placing a crap ton of containers to the side and I am pretty sure these people are now painfully feeling the consequences. Also make sure you get the right kind for your own personal needs, everyone has different reactions to certain items so here is a guide to picking the right one!
Expect the unexpected by bringing a rain poncho to the festival. I can not explain how grateful I was when pulling out this bad boy just seconds before rain began to pour down, causing the evacuation process to begin on Day 2. You can buy a reusable one at Walmart or Target for 20-30 bucks, depending on the quality and brand but you can always get a disposable one for just a dollar. And they really do work! I was bone dry when I stepped into my car, Scout’s Honor!
Expect to get wet at Free Press whether it is from the rain or some drunk idiot throwing his/ her beer in the air. By bringing a towel you can easily dry your body and hair to prevent getting sick or smelling like that drunk uncle at your quince.
Not a fan of standing in a crowd of sweaty millennials under the influence? Well, treat yourself by bringing an old blanket and lay it down on a nice patch of grass. Now you can work on that summer tan you’ve been meaning to get while listening to some a1 music. Or maybe take a nap, who cares, it’s your blanket!
- Portable Charger
Now, here is one item I didn’t bring and regretted not bringing. Imagine yourself snapchatting your favorite song by your favorite artist in the center front of the audience. You’re shouting the lyrics and jumping up and down with the other fans, having the time of your life. You then bring down your phone to add the caption to your snap for your story but then witness your phone die before your very eyes. The pain of not being able to snap the rest of the set and night is unbearable. Don’t be this person. Bring yourself at least one fully charged portable charger, bring two to be on the safe side or to lend to that roaching friend you brought along.
- Fanny Pack
Who knew I would ask my grandma for her Disney-themed fanny pack that she pulls out when she goes out and sell tamales throughout the holidays? Bringing a fanny pack to the festival was a huge step towards being that organized kid I aspired to be throughout high school. My biggest fear before going to Free Press was getting my phone and money taken away by some pesky thief. But thanks to the fanny pack, it kept my valuable items close to my privates causing a low risk of someone reaching down there to steal something. Not only can it SAFELY carry valuables like your money and phone but it can also hold other items such as the compressed disposable rain poncho and phone charger I brought along with me. Shop for some awesome stylish ones at your closest Zumiez or Forever 21.
Do I really need to explain this? It’s a great place to store items you bought at the festival plus it can hold your water bottle + sunscreen + towel + blanket you brought with you. Not only that but it can protect your back from some annoying fan pressing against you even though you both are at the very front, near the barricade. Make sure it is not a fancy camping one though. Just bring your school/ kid’s backpack, they wouldn’t mind, after all, you bought it!
- Look Down
This specifically applies to Day 2 of the festival. Some guy found 70 dollars on the ground near Mars at the beginning of the festival. Sure it might be muddy and nasty but you can definitely wipe it clean and use it to buy yourself some merch or that expensive grilled cheese everyone has been hyping up. After all, finders keepers.
- Arrive Early
I did this to be able to watch the local bands and artists but you can also take advantage of the empty spaces near the barricade to watch your all time favorite artist/ band. I’ve seen people camp out in front of Mars and Saturn to watch Deadmau5 and Modest Mouse. Maybe you can get the perfect spot for next year’s headliners by doing this? I would recommend bringing double the water supply though.