Folks, we anticipate quite a gathering this year at Live Nite Events’ Bonanza Campout Music Festival. The three-day outdoor music and camping festival at River’s Edge in Heber City takes place June 22–24 for its third year. This is the time for planning. This is the time to learn …
How to Bonanza
1. Bring a helmet.
If last year’s jump from the first year is any indication of what this year will be like, brace yourself. We have giants like Zhu, Wiz Khalifa and Halsey headlining. There are over 30 musicians performing over three days. Put your helmet on.
2. Take your helmet off.
During less-audible moments for those attending as weekend residents, there’s yoga, hiking, fishing and late-night bonfires. Bonanza sits at 50-50 for relaxing moments to euphoric moments. Bonanza can feel like a sensory wave of energy and emotion in one moment g, and then become as serene as a valley in the wilderness within the space of an hour. Think of it as a physical and mental adventure with the best soundtrack you’ve ever heard.
3. You can use your helmet as a bowl.
This is important because with the amount of vendors attending, you’ll want to try a few things … all at once. It’s like having the munchies at the Toys ‘R’ Us of foodstuff. You’ll have at least three types of french fries, more vegan food than you can shake a stick at, burritos, burgers, whatever you feel like. The smells all around are one of the subtle highlights of the festival. It’s the first thing you’ll notice as you drive up. On top of the food are the clothing vendors, which are a real highlight. You can get dresses, ponchos and the best big, floppy hats. Alcohol in all forms is available for sale, and those staying overnight can obviously keep whatever they like at their sites.
4. The helmet can be a pillow.
Resting and relaxing is half your day. Bring items that steady you in between bands. I bring two zero-gravity chairs with honings, which have been the envy of the those standing for two years in a row. I also set up a hammock by our tent, and the most crucial item you can bring for a hot day is a generic spray bottle filled with water. This keeps you cool and can help with the dust in the air. Also, if you feel so inclined, there’s a VIP bar with shade and plenty of chairs. Things that make grass comfy are a must.
5. The helmet can be a conversation piece.
There are so many friendly staffers wandering around to answer questions that you won’t be awash for info. The crowd will engage you regardless. Bonanza draws in great artists, and these artists create communities. Festivals unify people when these communities come together. Plan on having amazing dialogue. Present that awesome you in dress, energy, extravagance or simplicity.
6. You can mount a camera to a helmet.
Pictures are what you have after Bonanza, so take lots the them. The main stage at night looks fantastic, but you are also visiting Rivers Edge in Heber City. There’s plenty of gorgeous nature around to snap pictures of.
7. A helmet can be thrown and caught.
Games are all over the festival in several forms. There are the games offered by the festival, and then there are the impromptu games, which range from football and volleyball to cards, what looked like tag and the most inventive beer pong setups you’ve ever seen. The range of competitors span from quasi-athletic to wildly drunk. If your heart desires it, there’s a game for you. Alcohol is welcome—just bring and keep it in a cooler and plan ahead. The closest liquor store requires you to leave the festival, head to Heber and re-park.
8. The helmet can be used as ear muffs.
This is a kid-friendly festival, but like with any mass group, a general rating of behavior is hard to establish. There is a playground and activities to keep a child occupied, but these are concerts—and the rowdy are rampant. If you are a parent, you will have to be your usual vigilant self.
9. You can store a phone charger in your helmet.
Kiosks are available for phone charging, but nothing beats having a phone charger prepared. The No. 1 thing I hear at any festival is, “My phone’s dead.”
10. Make sure to put bug spray on your helmet.
Actually, for a festival, Bonanza is virtually bug-less. However, camping spots by the river or pond will have bugs. (Camping spots are first-come, first-served, so campers need to arrive early friday for the good spot. Think about shade and trash locations during your reconnaissance.)
On a better note: Camping spots by the pond include the benefit of proximity to the Pond Yacht after-party and morning yoga. The Pond Yacht after party leans more toward a rave environment with EDM DJs. Dancing and euphoric experiences abound around the pond till the early morning.
11. Do not bring your helmet in the shower.
Huge bathroom trailers are brought in with individual changing areas attached to showers. You will have practical access for most hygienic habits. In the first year of the festival, someone actually brought an inflatable hot tub. It wasn’t exactly hygienic, but feel free to improvise on all things that keep you and the festival clean.
12. Do not abandon your helmet.
Getting separated during a festival this big is going to happen. This doesn’t imply that you should come alone, but getting a lay of the land and setting up meeting points is the first thing you should do, after checking out the Bonanza merch stand. Last year, all the good sizes were sold out by the first day.
13. Give your helmet a name.
It’s important to address the festival culture. If Bonanza 2018 is going to be your first festival, then it’s important to know that this is the You Away from You. Festivals are unique in this way. You are not meeting Bridget from work. You’re meeting Bridget the star child. You get to spend time with people as who they are, away from circumstance. This is why, every year, more and more people attend these exotic festivals. It’s an artistic plunge. A warm, fuzzy vacation … with Quinn XCII.