The Shaky Knees and Shaky Beats festivals are coming to Central Park! For many Atlanta residents, these festivals are great opportunities to experience the music festival life without having to trek out to the middle of nowhere! As a chronic EDM festival-goer, I’ve picked up a few tricks that will help you get the most out of your festival experience. Welcome to your Shaky Survival Guide!
What to Wear
Guys – I don’t care if you wear pants or shorts. I don’t care if you wear a polo or a t-shirt. I don’t care if you wear a silly costume. But if you care about fitting in while staying cool and comfortable, shorts and a tank top is a safe option. But dear, sweet baby Jesus, wear compression shorts. You’re going to be dancing, walking, etc. for what adds up to a few miles every day, for up to 3 days. Things will chafe.
Ladies – For both Shaky Knees and Shaky Beats, you can’t go wrong with high-waisted jean shorts and a bohemian cropped tank top. Self conscious? Make it a full tank. Voila, you’re now dressed like 90% of girls at music festivals.
However, you’ll also see some guys and ladies wearing much more elaborate attire that may or may not include wings, rainbows, and a variety of colored makeup and sprays. You’ll also see other people wearing much less, to say the least. Just remember that no matter how you dress at a music festival, do it for yourself! Much of what makes the music festival a fun and magical environment is the ability to be yourself and let your freak flag fly, so don’t hold back! Live your truth. In a lot of ways, the modern definition of the music festival is owed to the men and women who dare to be authentic, bold and colorful.
Essential Packing List
A music festival is a lot like a crappy Australia – everything there is trying to kill you, but really really slowly. Your packing essentials are going to make sure you survive the day each day.
Essential 1: a Camelbak or similar water pouch backpack. You gotta hydrate, mate. Most music festivals these days have special hydration stations with spouts intended for these packs. Getting one provides you with a lot of advantages. No more paying for water bottles, fewer refill trips, plus a backpack! If it doesn’t go with your outfit (ladies this is probably the case) just make sure you have a friend with one that doesn’t mind cooties. Remember to rinse and empty before you bring it!
Essential 2: Earplugs. You can get ’em fancy or you can get the foam classics, but get earplugs. You might say, “But, but, I go to a music festival to hear the music! Why would I put in plugs that make it harder for me to hear it???” That’s because when you listen to music on your phone, you get a warning at 85dB. When you listen to music at a festival, that beat is bumping at a steady 130dB all day long (keep in mind this is a logarithmic scale folks). You’ll hear the music just fine through those earplugs, but while you’re enjoying the show, they’re doing the important job of ensuring you don’t go deaf. You can even go fancy and get specialty buds that block only harmful noise as well!
Essential 3: During the day, you’re going to get some sun. I’m not a weatherman, we have our weather page for that, but it may be a lot of sun. Regardless of your complexion and how much sun you expect to have, just do yourself a favor and put on some sunscreen. You don’t want to be sunburned by day two and have to spend the rest of the festival watching your favorite artists from under the shelter of a far off tent. That’s no fun for anyone.
Fun-damental Packing List
Along with the essentials for survival, you may also want to bring some additional goodies to make your festival time a little more enjoyable. The following packing list has those good-time goodies that you should consider.
Goodie #1: Snacks! Granola and nuts are probably going to be your best bets. Nuts if you want to share, granola if you don’t. Why no protein bars? Because they’ll dehydrate you. Why no candy? Because it will melt, get gross and sticky, and generally be a mess.
Goodie #2: Sunglasses and spectral shades. One for the daytime and one for the night (at Shaky Beats at least). Sunglasses (or a hat if that’s your thing) are going to be a real necessity when it comes to keeping those eyes on the stage and not staring into the sun. Your spectral shades basically just act as little prisms, taking those pretty lights to the next level. If you think head, you can get them online for $2 instead of at the event for $20.
Goodie #3: Party Favors. Although you might get them away if you make yourself too obvious, people generally have little to no issue getting stuff in. It’s not my MO, but hey if you want some party favors to help you enjoy the show a little more, then by all means, bring all the party favors you want.