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So you bought tickets for all three days of Osheaga 2022. Evil!
Best case scenario: You have a life-changing experience that fills your soul with an abundance of joy, love, creativity, and wonder. You spot someone in the crowd during your favorite band’s performance, fall in love, and said band plays at your wedding. Could occur!
Worst-case scenario: You get heat stroke on Friday and fill up on fluids for the rest of the weekend.
Obviously, there are millions of other possibilities, but you might want to read this list of tips so you don’t end up with an IV in your arm or a second-degree sunburn.
Let’s go to Oh!
Hydrate: Fun fact: a human being can survive without water for up to three days. Osheaga is three days. Coincidence? Probably, but there is absolutely no reason why you, a person at a music festival in a large metropolitan city, should suffer from dehydration. Pack a water bottle (a clear one, as festival organizers recommend) so you can use the water refill stations throughout the weekend. Remember, White Claws do not count as hydration.
Sunscreen is a must: At this point in the summer, you’re probably feeling pretty good about the base tan you’ve been working on. The bad sunburn happened during the May heat wave, your skin has finally stopped peeling, and you’re radiating a perfect mid-summer glow. Good for you! But Osheaga is not the time to rest on our laurels. Keep loading sunscreen, several times a day. You’ll be sweaty, you’ll be dirty, so think of sunscreen as a kind of Banana Boat shower! Not only will you smell like a Pina Colada, but you’ll also be protected from dangerous UV rays. Pro Tip: Don’t forget to put cream on the tops of your ears, feet, and the back of your neck.
Place shadow: Let’s take a moment to appreciate the true MVP of a hot summer day: the trees. Sitting under a tree is one of life’s little pleasures, but in Osheaga’s case, the sweet relief she’ll feel as she steps out of the scorching sun will be enormous. Sure, I get that you don’t want to miss out on an Osh fun time, but periodically dipping in a little shade will help prevent the risk of heatstroke or heat exhaustion or worse – combine this tip with your sunscreen and hydration tips, and it will be ready. You are really setting yourself up for a successful weekend.
Consume responsibly: There is no reason to deny the fact that part of the festival’s attraction is the combination of good music/bands and drugs/alcohol. It’s a story as old as time, or at least as old as Mick Jagger. And after the last few years of COVID lockdowns and measures, it’s understandable that people are looking for reasons to kick back and have fun, but don’t overdo it. The combination of heat/sun, alcohol, and large crowds can make things go wrong very quickly. So be aware of how you’ll be using mind-altering substances, surround yourself with trusted friends, and be careful.
Go with trusted friends: Speaking of trustworthy friends, going to Osheaga with a whole group of them can not only help you have the time of your life, but they can also help if things don’t go as planned. turning on the Find my friends feature on your phone can help you keep track of each other’s location if you ever get separated, because strength is in numbers. Also, you can spread the responsibilities among the group, for example, one person brings the glitter, another brings the flowers for the crowns, another brings a roll of toilet paper (see last tip).
Wear clothing that can be destroyed: I know, this one is hard. For one thing, you want to use all the cool gear you’ve amassed over the last 24 months. On the other hand, anything you wear on Osheaga could be ruined forever. It will be hot and sweaty, dusty and dirty. So keep that in mind when preparing your outfits for the weekend. Self-expression is key, so no matter what you decide to wear, make sure you FEEL amazing, I mean physically comfortable, but also psychologically amazing because you’re rocking your outfit. If that means wearing old sneakers or cutting up a worn t-shirt, so be it. Life is about balance.
Have an arrival/exit strategy: Osheaga is huge, hosting between 45,000 and 50,000 music fans a day. That’s a huge number of people who will enter the festival and eventually leave it. Familiarize yourself with the performers’ schedule, so you can be strategic about when they will arrive and leave each day. Arriving at the festival around noon and waiting in line with thousands of people while the midday sun beats down on you is not the best way to start the day. Have a plan for getting in and hopefully you’ll be able to get in and out of the venue without a hitch. Plus, coming up with a plan that ultimately works out perfectly is another of life’s little pleasures (someone please list life’s little pleasures).
Bring toilet paper?: Just an idea. You won’t get the bathroom amenities you’re used to at home or in the office during a three-day music festival, unless you’re paying big bucks for some VIP action. But for most of you, it’s going to be a public bath weekend, so why not bring a roll of TP from home and treat your butt like a VIP? This may not be my best idea, but it’s certainly not my worst. Treat yourself!
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