The Ultimate Guide To Okeechobee Music Festival
Going to Okeechobee Music Festival? Here's a guide to help with the preparation!
If you are looking for a great way to start your 2023 festival season, Okeechobee Music Festival is an absolutely amazing choice! This year, Okeechobee will be taking place from March 2nd to March 5th at Sunshine Grove in Okeechobee, Florida. The four-day weekend extravaganza is filled with incredible music, gorgeous art installations, empowering workshops, and wonderfully unique experiences. Okeechobee is my favorite festival for many reasons, so I’m especially excited to write this post for you all! Let’s get it! 🙂
The Ultimate Guide To Okeechobee Music Festival
1.) How Do I Start Planning For Okeechobee Music Festival?
You just bought your ticket and are probably thinking, what do I do now? Well, there are quite a few things you should do to prepare for the best weekend of your life!
First, you want to ensure your body is in good condition before you go. Camping festivals can be quite rough on your physical body, but thankfully there are things you can do to make sure you can handle it. I recommend exercising regularly, eating nutritious foods, and getting plenty of good sleep every day at least one or two weeks before the festival. More importantly, hydrate, hydrate, HYDRATE! Pro tip: Drinking Raveraide is a great way to get your hydration up. 😉 Doing all these things will improve your energy, stamina, and immunity, which will come in handy for those long days and late nights.
Next, you want to coordinate your travel and arrival plans. This is extra important if you’re going in a group! One of the best things about Okeechobee is camping next to all of your friends, but doing this requires good planning. Make sure you get in touch with your entire group and take the time to ensure everyone is on the same page. If you have a large group, your best bet is to all meet up somewhere outside the venue, group your cars together in a single-file line, and drive in together. Last year, my group and I met up at a Walmart about ten minutes away from the venue and everything worked perfectly! If you are wondering what the best time to get there is, a lot of people suggest getting there when the gates open at 9am on Thursday. I got there around 12pm on Thursday last year and got an amazing camping spot, so I would recommend just getting there anytime between 9am and 1pm!
Lastly, it’s better to over-prepare than under-prepare. I recommend having everything ready at least one or two days before you leave so you’re not scrambling to get everything ready the night before/the day of. It can be really stressful trying to do everything last minute! If you don’t know what to pack, make sure you take a look at the lists we included in this post! We also have a few other blogs that will help with the preparation process. Check out 11 Rave Essentials You Need To Bring To Your First Festival, 13 Insanely Helpful Music Festival Tips For First Timers, and The Ultimate Music Festival Camping Checklist.
2.) What Will The Weather Be Like?
Florida weather is… Interesting. If you live here, you know! Okeechobee takes place in March, so the weather and temperature are definitely something to keep in mind. Let me tell you right off the bat, it will be HOT during the day. You will most likely find yourself waking up in a puddle of sweat contemplating life, but that’s just the camping life! I would invest in some good battery-powered fans to keep in your tent and around camp to help out with the heat. The temperature ranges from about 80-90 degrees throughout the day while the sun is out, so bring comfy clothes, sunglasses, and lots of sun protection.
When the sun goes down, things switch up quite a bit! It will gradually get colder and colder as the night goes on. If you live up north it might feel nice, but if you don’t like the cold then keep that in mind! Make sure to pack a good amount of warm outfits and lots of blankets and pashminas. If you really hate the cold, you can also buy hand warmers or even a heater for inside your tent! My outfit of choice for the cold nights is a cute onesie, it never fails me!
As for the actual weather, it usually stays pretty sunny the entire weekend but there’s always the risk of rain, especially in Florida. Just remember to bring an emergency umbrella or poncho just in case. There are covers you can buy for your tent as well to protect it from getting drenched! It can also get pretty windy, even during the day, so make sure you bring some extra heavy-duty stakes for your tent/canopy so they don’t get blown over or blown away!
3.) What Do I Pack?
Again, it’s better to over-pack than under-pack! Make sure to think outside the box and imagine every possible scenario you could be in. I wrote out a pretty basic list of essentials you will need, but I definitely suggest doing a lot more research from multiple sources! There are a ton of lists on Google and a lot of videos on Youtube and TikTok that tell you exactly what you should have!
- Ticket Wristband
- Phone Charger
- Portrable Charger
- Warm clothes for night time
- Bathing suits
- Bathroom essentials
- Hygiene essentials
- Wet wipes
- Portable shower bag
- Shower essentials
- Shower flip-flops
- Beach/ shower towels
- Bug repellant
- Bags/hydration pack
- Prescribed medication
- Vitamins, supplements, & Raveraide
- Pain medications
- First aid kit
- Bandana/face mask
- Small mirror
- Gifts to trade
- Flow toys
- Tent/stakes/rain cover
- Air mattress with pump or cot
- Sleeping bag
- Tool kit
- Tarp for under the tent
- Tarp/moon mats/rugs for the ground around camp
- Tapestries for shade and decoration
- Camp chairs
- Inflatable couches
- Plastic table
- Any portable cooking devices
- Pots, pans, and kitchen utensils if needed
- Plastic plates, bowls, cups, and utensils
- Reusable water bottles
- Paper towels
- Cleaning supplies like clorox wipes, lysol spray, etc..
- Trash bags
- Battery powered fans
- Battery powered lights
- Head strap lights
- Food and snacks
- LOTS of water
- LOTS of ice
- Ziplock bags
- Tall totem to help find your camp
- Locks for your tent
- Storage for organization purposes like cheap drawers, shoe organizers, plastic bins, etc..
- Cute camp decorations
4.) What Can I Expect When I Get To Okeechobee?
My number one rule for going to Okeechobee is to go into it with an open heart and mind. If it’s your first time, get ready to see a bunch of random and funky things! All of the creativity, weirdness, and beauty is what makes Okeechobee special. It is truly a safe haven to fully express yourself! It’s also a place where you can expect to meet the best people and have the most unique and wonderful experiences.
If there was one thing I wish I knew before my first Okee, it would be how dirty you get! That might be a slight exaggeration, but camping is definitely not like staying in a 5-star hotel. There will be lots of sweat, dirt, and channeling your inner forest fairy occurring. As weird as it sounds, it’s honestly one of my favorite parts about camping at festivals because it makes me feel so human and connected to Earth… Just me? If you find yourself starting to get a little grimey, don’t worry too much about it. Everyone is feeling the same way! If embracing the grime isn’t your thing (completely understandable), there are multiple things you can do to get back to feeling fresh! Okeechobee offers showers, but they do cost around $10 each shower (if you have GA) and the lines can take hours sometimes. The ultimate combination of all combinations in my opinion is a portable shower bag and LOTS of baby wipes. I’ve also had a couple of friends who just fill up gallons of water from the free water stations and take showers that way!
Another good thing to know going into the festival is that the venue is really big and requires a lot of walking at times to get from one place to another. This being said, make sure to bring comfortable shoes that you know you can walk in with no issues! Also with the festival being so large, I would advise exploring the entire venue on day one just to familiarize yourself with how everything is set up and how to navigate the festival. Trust me, there is a lot to see!
The last thing I’d like to point out is that this event goes on all night. The sets at Jungle 51 go until 7am and there are people all over the place doing random things pretty much 24/7. If you think you’re going to need some peace and quiet at certain points or you’re super sensitive to sounds while you’re trying to sleep, I recommend investing in some good quality noise-canceling headphones! If all else fails, the good ol’ pillow over the head never fails me either!
5.) Places/Things To Check Out At Okeechobee
Okeechobee is a mystical wonderland of literally ENDLESS things to check out and stumble upon. The best thing anyone could suggest to do at this festival is to just explore as much as you can and discover everything! Here’s some of the best things to do/see at Okeechobee:
- Chobeewobee Village! This spectacular area in the venue is home to the vendor village, food and drink stands, live performances, mind/body/soul workshops, insane art installations, and so much more. It’s the perfect place to hang out in between sets!
- Aquachobee! In the mood for a beach day? Aquachobee has you covered! It’s a small beach area with a stage, lots of shade, and immaculate vibes. You can chill and catch some rays, party to the music, or even play volleyball on the beach courts!
- Jungle 51! Did you really think the party ended after the main stages close? That’s funny. Jungle 51 is a small wooded area with a small stage that plays music until 7am! Some of my favorite things about Jungle 51 are the lasers, the disco ball, and the crazy things you see during late wook hours.
- The Incendia Stage! Ready to experience the HEAT? Incendia is a stage right next to Aquachobee and features absolutely insane uses of fire. There are domes with fire on the ceiling, fire dance performances, and a massive fire cannon that fries your eyebrows off every couple of minutes. The sets at this stage go pretty late too, so it’s a great after-party spot.
- All of the amazing art installations! This festival isn’t called Okeechobee Music and ARTS Festival for no reason. Okeechobee features so many incredible works of art made by extremely talented people. There’s interactive art, live painting, and so many things to just stare at for hours.
- Frick Frack Blackjack! This is a card game Okeechobee has set up where you can bet anything BUT money! Bring some cool things to bet and maybe win some cool things in return.
6.) What Is The Music Like?
Okeechobee’s lineup (shown at the top of the post) is fully stacked and super diverse! One of the best things about this festival is how many amazing artists and bands you can discover. Here’s a music map that Okeechobee posted to help you understand what kind of music will be there this year! If you find the image a little hard to read, here is the link to the map on Okeechobee’s website: Okeechobee Lineup and Music Map
7.) What Kind Of Expenses Do I Have To Consider?
It’s a little hard to say exactly how much you will spend at Okeechobee because everyone will have different circumstances and experiences. To help you visualize everything a bit better, here’s a list of the main possible expenses that you should keep in mind:
- The cost of the ticket.
- Ticket add-ons and camping options.
- New outfits, camping supplies, and food/drinks to have at camp.
- Food and drinks that you buy inside the festival.
- All traveling expenses if you are not driving (plane tickets, Ubers/taxis, hotels, etc.)
- Gas money if you are driving.
- Shopping money to use at vendor village and when you find independent sellers (most independent sellers will only take cash and sometimes Cashapp/Venmo/Paypal).
- Money for shower tokens.
- Extra money for emergencies and miscellaneous purchases.
That completes it! Now you know pretty much everything you need to before going to Okeechobee Music Festival. Just remember that these were just the basics, and you will still experience and learn so much more throughout the festival. Even though I’ve been to Okeechobee before, I’m still discovering and learning new things. All I can truly say is make sure you are well prepared and just go into the festival with an open heart, no judgment, and your best energy. Happy Okee, friends. 🙂
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