Set on the sprawling hills of Bradley, CA, Lightning in a Bottle 2016 proved to be the biggest and best gathering to date as Do LaB cemented a major pre-event milestone in its rich, colorful history, hitting max capacity at 20,000 tickets weeks before the gates opened. Imagined and flawlessly executed by Los Angeles’ merrymaking collective of event production virtuosos Do LaB over Memorial Day weekend, LIB continues to ascend as a kaleidoscope of adventures and life changing experiences that will successfully surprise even the most seasoned revelers. LIB is definitely not your typical festival. It truly is life-changing whether or not your LIB adventures entail you spending most of your time at the comforts of the main stages or embracing the full experience and attending various workshops and exploring their micro environments. While the after festival glow of other events may last a few days or weeks at most, LIB’s afterglow is sure to leave a life long impression. The transformative festival is unique in many ways and has taught this seasoned festival goer a few things that all other festivals combined could not. Whether it was the type of people who attended the event, the festival producers who created the stunning experience, or a mix of both, everyone goes home from LIB with a some life lessons.
Firstly, be adventurous in all you do whether that means straying from your plans and spending the evening with an entirely new group of friends, or following the music to see where it takes you. After a long day of festivities, my camp, MF Animals (Mother Father Animals), made our way back to our tents. Most of us were exhausted from the day’s adventures and turned in relatively early to ensure we had energy for the next day. However two of our camp mates wandered off toward music playing in the distance for an all night adventure I wish I had tagged along on as well. While it wasn’t my adventure, their stories of the night made me see that even when the main stage music is over, the life of the festival was in its attendees. The festival continued in more intimate settings through the night and I missed it because I was sleeping. Don’t get me wrong, it’s in your best interest to make sure you’re well rested at a festival like this one, but every once in a while it’s perfectly fine to just follow the music!
During the festival, most attendees had very little to no service at all the entire weekend. While this made things like meeting up with friends a little difficult, it made it so much easier to just put your phone away and be in the moment. It’s not often we’re able to tear ourselves away from social media, our phone apps, and step back from the world to truly enjoy the moment. At LIB, I was almost forced to do just that. Because of this, my friends and I really got to enjoy each other’s company while every one was fully present. There was not one person in a corner on their phones and it was wonderful.
Saturday afternoon, during Space Jesus, I found myself sitting under some shade people watching while my friends danced. I remember looking around and thinking to myself “What the f*ck is actually going on right now?”. There were groups of people on pool floaties lounging and drinking, a guy dressed up in a leopard outfit dancing with leopard-like movements, and one group was carrying around a whole watermelon with them. I was in awe of all the strange things people were doing and how happy they were in the moment. It was a unique brand of strange you can’t find anywhere else and I found it strangely endearing! It brought me back to child like innocence where our imaginations ran wild and we were simply happy. Here we all were in the middle of nowhere, doing all kinds of random things, surrounded only by people who loved and respected each other. How amazing is that? Where else could you find such a happy mix of people? In short, dance any way you want and do whatever makes you happy. Be yourself, and you will be surrounded by love and happiness.
All New Friends
Ravers have always talked about PLUR, but how often do we ravers feel that we’ve practiced that mantra? Lately it seems more and more people who practice “PLUR” are simply passing off the fact that they’re not doing something offensive or minding their own business as PLUR. We’re forgetting how to truly show love and respect for those around us. PLUR is inviting your a stranger to share a meal with you without expecting anything in return. It’s inviting wanderers into your campsite and getting to know them, or even just letting them share some shade with you for the moment. PLUR isn’t just making sure your friends are ok, it’s noticing a medic starting to carry a too-drunk attendee out of the crowd and helping him carry that person and care for them instead of just watching; even if you have no idea who they are. The next time you feel you’re being PLUR by sharing a smile and some small talk, make it more meaningful, invite them to share a meal or a drink with you or simply, thank them for being part of your festival experience.
Get a taste of the magic in this LIB 2016 Aftermovie and be sure to check out LIB’s sister festival Woogie Weekend taking place this July 8-10 for its sophomore year at Oak Canyon Park in Silverado, SoCal.