My first time experience at Shambhala Music Festival was positive and although the couple of weeks leading up to Shambhala were exciting, they were scary and sometimes nerve-racking. My anxiety about crossing the border and the forest fires surrounding the area was non-stop, and… because I’ve never camped in a tent for a week before, I packed as much glamping supplies as possible. Comfort is key for me…
Advice: Make sure it’s clear to border patrol you have been to Shambhala before when crossing the border.
I have never been to a music festival in Canada before but; I knew I would probably face some trouble at the border.
I have tattoos and I had dreadlocks in my hair for the festival so, of course I was asked to have my belongings searched. Not only did they search my car, border patrol read through all my text messages to find any reason to not let me into the country. I was solid and eventually they gave my things back and let me go on to the festival grounds.
Shambhala for me was an journey with some of the most incredible stages I have ever witnessed in my ten years of traveling the world to see music. Laid out with seven stages; Pagoda, Village, Living Room, Amphitheater, Grove, and Cedar Lounge there was some much to take in.
One of their stages, Fractal Forest is even trademarked! Let me tell you it was pure magic…it was everything I was promised. The secret of it made it 100% better than I expected. As I walked in the first night, the lasers and art grab me, but it was the good vibes and pumping sound system that kept me there all night.
Shambhala is easily in the top three festivals I have ever attended. They do not allow alcohol but they do test your drugs for you to keep attendees safe. People do drugs at festivals and no one can stop that but you can make sure you are a little safer while on drugs. They have a place called the Sanctuary you can go and rest if you aren’t feeling good. The sanctuary has people that talk you out of bad trips and do whatever they can do to make you feel better.
I had one of the best weeks of my life on the farm. The festival didn’t come without it’s hiccups…forest fires had everyone on high alert and the Sunday cancellation was confusing for attendees and artists but I understood it was for our safety.
I met some incredible people that will stay life long friends and I can’t wait to be back for the 21st Shambhala Music Festival in 2018.