Would You Invite Yourself Back? Leave No Trace at Festivals

Coeur D’Alene, ID: Love a festival? Us too! Music, dancing, food, fun and friends…what’s not to like? Well…maybe a few things. Bringing thousands of people together can have negative impacts on the land, wildlife, and on visitors and locals. But, with a bit of planning and knowledge, festival fun doesn’t have to keep you from being on your best Leave No Trace behavior! Check out this video for easy things everyone can do to Leave No Trace at festivals, then read on for even more tips and tricks.

1. An easy way to create less waste at festivals is to arrive with less waste. Repackage food at home into reusable bags or containers. Getting rid of that extra packaging will give you more room in your car, too!

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2. Speaking of cars…reduce fuel consumption and parking congestion by carpooling or even riding your bike to the festival. Bet you’ll get props for arriving in style!

3. The best campsites are found, not made. Camp in designated sites or on durable surfaces, and bring tables, chairs and reusable decorations to camp comfortably.

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4. Feathers and sequins are fun festival gear, but make sure your costumes and decorations don’t leave a litter trail.

5. How long will your festival toys last? Glow sticks are fun, but only for a few hours. What about colorful flashlights, bubbles or a hula hoops instead?

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6. Who wants to sit around a campsite all day when there’s festival fun to be had? Just make sure to secure your belongings to keep them from blowing away and becoming trash.

7. You can’t always camp near your car at festivals, so make sure to have a cooler and sturdy bins that close securely to store food, trash and other smellables. Bring locks or straps to help make them critter-proof.

8. Find a cool natural, historical or cultural artifact? Lucky you! Snap a picture and create good festival juju by leaving what you find.

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9. Do you really need a fire to have fun at a festival? Camp stoves create less impact, and are safer and faster.  More time for dancing!

10. Being at a festival is being a guest in someone else’s community. Follow the golden rule of festivals by treating other festivarians and locals as you would want to be treated. Think about your actions: Would you invite yourself back?

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Enjoy Your World (and your festivals). Leave No Trace.

Jessie and Matt, Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainers Team West

Leave No Trace's Jessie Johnson and Matt Schneider are part of the 2017 Subaru/Leave No Trace Traveling Trainer Program that provides free, mobile education to communities across the country. Proud partners of this program include Subaru of America, REI, Eagles Nest Outfitters, Deuter, Thule, Klean Kanteen, and Smartwool.