Reignite Your Festival Passion: Tips to Keeping the Magic

People taking a group selfie

Photo: Jake West/ Insomniac

Warning! If you love festivals and invest a decent amount of time and effort into them, you’re destined to experience burnout or fatigue at some point. Maybe the music isn’t hitting like it used to, maybe your festival family is dropping-off as other life priorities creep in, or maybe you simply can’t justify the money, time, or effort to plan another weekend full of wooks and wonder.

Don’t worry, what you’re experiencing is completely natural and happens to the best of us. The real question is, where do you go from here, what are your options, and how do you keep your festie flame burning?

1. Embrace a little chaos

You’re not a wide-eyed festival virgin venturing into the festival grounds for the first time. You know what a festival demands and the key elements required to maximize the experience. If you have some flexible funds and PTO handy, stop thinking that you need months to plan because you don’t. It’s muscle memory at this point, like riding a bike or shooting a jump shot – and shooters shoot!

When you limit the time spent planning, you’re forced to live in the moment and reduce expectations. Let go, lean on your past experiences for guidance and let the festival magic take over.Best Summer Music Festivals 2019 Lineup - Top 10 Music Festivals in the U.S.

Photo: Getty Images

2. Draft a new crew

You have a lot of history with your festie fam but some of the greatest connections lie just beyond that circle. Whether you’ve connected with incredible show neighbors or developed online friendships rooted in a love for festivals and live music, build community and get out in the field with them. They won’t know your inside jokes or past show stories, but the experience will be unlike any other and create a sense of excitement that’ll have you feeling reinvigorated. Plus, you’re almost guaranteed to have some great new relationships that will only add to the dynamic of future experiences.

Festival lovers share a unique code, bond and set of common passions that are highly conducive to producing incredible vibes. I’m not advocating that you go rogue and go with anyone, but we all have those chance interactions that could be more – try giving them a chance.

“Life is beautiful not because of the things we do, but because of the people we meet” – Simon Sinek36 mind-altering photos from Lightning in a Bottle 2016

3. For the love of god, try a new festival!

This may be harsh, but festival goers too often prioritize chasing lineups with artists that they already know intimately. The same can be said for only making an annual pilgrimage to the same festival you’ve attended for the past decade. If this formula works for you – great! You don’t have to abandon it, but try switching it up for a year by adding a new festival to your summer plans or simply saying “yes” to a fresh opportunity. 

Discovery is one of the most coveted rewards of attending a festival, and attending a new festival just pushes that opportunity to the max. Allow yourself to be a noob again and be blown away by the unexpected. If you do, expect every detail to leave a lasting impact and potentially produce a profound experience when it’s all said and done.Imagine Music Festival delivers with music, visuals – Technique

4. Take the scenic route

Festivals are an immersive, game-like experience by nature. There are wild characters, main objectives, side quests, storylines that unfold and even NPC’s. When we become veterans of a particular festival, we navigate them differently and often skirt some of the details in favor of cutting to the chase.

New experiences force you to start from the first level, figure things out, embrace challenges in stride and simply play. It’s no different than listening to an album for the first time and really taking it in rather than skipping through to your favorite songs. Surrender, you’ll be better for it.10 Best Music Festivals in Europe - The Ultimate Guide to Europe's Music  Festivals – Go Guides


If you want to re-energize the festival experience, you need to get out of your comfort zone and venture into the unknown. Sure, it’s great to have all of the answers and play sherpa as you wax poetic about years past, but at some point you need to bring the magic back: be spontaneous, prioritize new connections, hit a new festival and immerse yourself in everything the experience has to offer.

– Chuck Energy

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