When you have as much love for a festival as I have for Lightning In A Bottle, it can make it nearly impossible for the event to exceed your expectations. LIB has done such a great job in previous years that you know it’s going to be great – but one would think it would be impossible for a festival to blow your mind in new ways each year. Well… they did! LIB 2017 reached a new level of awesome for two main reasons: water, and an exciting new business model.
The first thing that catapulted LIB from a great festival located on an okay property was water. Lake San Antonio, which for the past three years was all but dried up, was filled to 68%. This completely changed the venue. Gone were the days of the dustbowl, and in came the days of all-day pool-party vibes. Meeting new friends on neighboring floaties was a welcome addition to the LIB experience. Along with the functional aspect of the water came the fashionable aspect, as the lake propelled LIB into debates about which festival venue is the the prettiest. (FYI, Sasquatch wins, Hangout is probably second, with LIB a close third.)
Photo by @gettiny
The main reason LIB reached an all-time level of awesome was the Do Lab’s success in providing other festivals with stages. After taking stages to festivals like Coachella and Boom in Portugal, the Do Lab has created a reputation as one of the top stage and shade structure manufacturers in the festival space. This must have prompted their design explosion that resulted in 10 new structures for this year’s festival. To put this into perspective, most annual festivals create a new structure every other year on average. By creating all of these structures at once, it made LIB feel like it was straight out of the future.
Photo Credit: Eric Allen
While the water and stages were new, the epic vibe remained consistent with what was generated in previous years. Every single human you crossed paths with looked like they were having the best day of their life. If we had a way of counting the number of friendships that were created over the course of the weekend, we could understand how special LIB really is. My personal count of new friends was in easily in the thirties. In a world where true human connection is lost, LIB truly stands out as a life-changing experience.