I’m a hobbyist. I grew up with a fishing rod in one hand and a golf club in the other, thanks to my hobby-mad family. When I turned 13, I took snowboarding lessons and discovered yet another hobby to explore. I took all of these very seriously and discovered that the more I learned, the more successful I could be. I loved learning new tips and researching gear that would help me perform at my best. I also enjoyed learning the etiquette, or code, passed down from veterans to first-timers, because it made me feel like I was a part of a community I loved.
Once I learned the etiquette and became proficient at each hobby, it was like I’d joined some kind of club. Each club had its own benefits. As a fisherman and golfer, I had something in common with most of the older guys I came across, which always seemed to be a good thing. For example, it was always a big help if a girl friend’s father fished or golfed. Once I learned to talk snowboarding talk, it didn’t just help me make friends in ski areas – talking snowboarding helped me make friends no matter where I was. These were my people.
After spending my entire life loving these hobbies, I went to my first music festival. To say it was love at first dance party would be an understatement. Getting to see my favorite artists outside, surrounded by thousands of epic humans, was nothing short of a dream come true. Festivals were everything my life was missing.
I’ve spent the last seven years traveling to festivals and learning everything I could about this activity, which means so much to me. I have experienced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. The high you feel when you and your favorite people see your favorite act play their best show ever is similar to the euphoric high you get when you make an birdie, catch a big fish, or get first tracks on a powder day. Your heart and love for the hobby grows with each experience.
I’ve also experienced the lows. The soul-crushing loneliness when you can’t find your friends during the headliner’s set is the same feeling you get when you lose your season pass or drive 8 hours to go fishing and don’t catch anything.
All of these experiences helped me recognize that festivaling is just as much of a hobby as fishing, golfing and snowboarding. But since it’s a new hobby, it lacks some of the key attributes of other hobbies. For instance, they have an established etiquette that’s been passed down from veterans to first-timers so everyone can help each other have a great time. The other hobbies also have a company or companies that support the community and create products that the enthusiasts need to achieve success.
Although festivaling is a valid hobby, it’s never been recognized as such, so festival enthusiasts have never had the tools they need to truly succeed. Luckily, I’ve made all of the mistakes, so no one else has to. I also know the most passionate and dedicated FestivalGoers out there – and they helped me create The FestivalGoer’s Guide, the world’s first complete How-To-Festival document, compiled for FestivalGoers by FestivalGoers.
The FestivalGoer’s Guide finally establishes the etiquette our community needs to really thrive. It also passes along all of the gear, tips, and hacks the veterans use to have the best possible time at every festival they attend.
Once we establish festivaling as an official hobby and develop a common festivaling etiquette, the benefits will appear almost immediately. There will be no more trash, as everyone will pick up after themselves. We will have new headliners, as everyone will take time to discover up-and-coming artists. Everyone will even do their part to make the festival around them better. The benefits of being a part of this crowd will extend beyond the festival, as the bonding that happens during a festival experience is the sort of thing that should be communicated around the world, to all walks of life.
If you’re ready to become a true FestPRO who makes every festival better, just visit home.festevo.com/book and join us. Let’s make 2018 the year that festivaling became a bona fide hobby – and every festival packed with a crowd that unites to improve the experience from the inside out.