We’ve all been there. Day 3 of a long-awaited summer festival and you feel like the favorite plaything of an outdoor cat: mud-covered, sun-damaged and nibbled on by God knows what. And while you feel like your very soul is sloughing off and sinking into the destroyed turf of whatever park, farm or greenspace these fest organizers have managed to wrangle, you can’t help but notice that there’s people around who are as chipper as you were on day one.
What’s their deal, these almost supernaturally happy humans? Are some people’s reserves of f*cks to give that much deeper than your own? Don’t they know that Sundays are usually weak as all hell? It can’t all be drugs, can it? Chances are, if you’ve come across these folks in your own travels, the reasons for their sunny disposition isn’t some vast reserve of inner strength. More than likely, they’ve just been here a few more times than you and they planned their trip accordingly.
With that in mind, we’ve tagged our festival veterans to give you a list of things you shouldn’t leave home without and tips to become one of those 36 Hour Party People.
A Decent Water Bottle
There is literally only one thing you must bring to a festival aside from your own damn self, and that, my friend, is some delicious, icy cold water. Listen to me — don’t buy $5-$10 bottles once inside. Don’t let yourself pass out or get heat poisoning because you’re too broke or cheap to shell out for that overpriced sh*t. Don’t resent the hell out of everyone around you during even your favorite artist on earth performing brand new material because you’re so parched and miserable you can’t sing along. Be a grown up and procure a sturdy water bottle of your own to bring in empty and refill once inside.
Here’s an example of the perfect option, the insulated Takeya, which costs between $20-$30 and will last you for entirety of festival season, saving you approximately $500 in the process. The insulation means that if you put icy, cold water in, it will stay cold for a full 24 hours. You could trek through Coachella, hook up with a hottie in a mansion in Palm Desert, show up at a set the next day and still be drinking cold water. Technology is amazing. So is hydration. Plus, this thing is BPA free so in case said hottie is environmentally aware, you’ll look even hotter. Stay thirsty my friends. — Caitlin White