The Ultimate Music & Arts Festival Prep List: Get Ready for Your Summer Dream

Maybe you’ve never been to a festival before, or you've been a mainstay for years. Perhaps you've spent your time at festivals across the coast; or checked out what's available on the east coast local scene. Maybe you’ve been camped out at Brooklyn warehouse parties the last six years. Either way, Gratitude Migration is a unique and new experience for even the most seasoned festival-goer; as we fuse elements from transformational festivals around the world with that special Brooklyn/New York flavor, while relocating it all to the beach. 

Whether this is your first festival or your fifteenth, here are some tips to make the most out of your first Gratitude Migration and make sure you’ve got everything you need to have a magical time at your Summer Dream on the beach.

1.     Buy Your Ticket - and do it now!

If you haven’t bought your ticket yet, now’s the time to go ahead and buy one. Do it now - before we sell out! Once you’ve done that, you can print your ticket or use your Eventbrite confirmation to check in at the festival gate (we recommend going paper-free to save some trees, but if you'd rather leave technology behind we get it, too!) This year, we will be providing RFID-enabled wristbands at Gate entry which you will be able to link to your account or use cash or credit at a topup stations which allow you to fill them with money that can be used to pay for food, drink, and artisan bazaars throughout the festival.

NOTE: This post has been updated to let you all know that we will no longer have cash or credit card facilities onsite; but all transactions will take place via cashless RFID. 

PRO TIP: Head to the refill stations BEFORE you head to the bar, grab some food in the culinary cove, or shop in the bazaar. That way you'll have money ready to spend; AND you don't have to carry cash around in your swimsuit.

2.     Organize Transportation

hELLO Beach is located in Keansburg, New Jersey, just over an hour away from New York City. To minimize our carbon footprint, we recommend using one of the many public transport options to get to the beach, including bus, train, ferry and even bicycle!

The Junxion party bus is happening and that's one way to arrive in the party spirit. We've been in touch with local transport authorities to make your trip as seamless as possible; including getting the bus to drop off guests at the beach, door-to-door from Port Authority; and shuttles to pick you up from the train or ferry. If you've just got to drive, do your best to carpool; note that there are limited parking facilities and we have sold out of

3.     Beg, Borrow or Buy Equipment

You’ll need basic camping gear including a tent, sleeping bag and whatever else you’d like to make yourself comfortable – but remember, beach camping means you’re less likely to need any sleeping pads with sand underneath. Shade structures are recommended, as it can get pretty hot and windy on the beach. 

For sustainability purposes, we recommend borrowing camping equipment from friends who might not use theirs as often rather than buying new; or check out our tent rental and pre-pitched tent options.

You’ll also need other gear like lanterns, headlamps, and reusable plates, cups and forks as well as a refillable water bottle. For more info, check out our full packing list here.

Photo by Tico Chango

Photo by Tico Chango

4.     Secure your Squad

Festivals are always more fun with friends, and when it’s this close to home, there’s no reason everyone can’t make it. Get a group together and buy your tickets at a discount, and check out our handy tips for staying friends during and after the festival.

Photo by Daniel Montuoro

Photo by Daniel Montuoro

5.     Plan your Experience

The lineup of workshops, speakers, musicians, artists and live art is intense - and all listed online. Browse, listen to music and check out our What When Where guide online so you can plan what is on your must-do list versus your nice-to-catch. And don’t forget how festivals work – you can plan it all, but be prepared for the wind to take you in any different direction and that’s just fine!

Photo by Daniel Montuoro

Photo by Daniel Montuoro

6.     Raid the Dressup Box

Photo by Daniel Montuoro

Photo by Daniel Montuoro

We’re all about radical self expression which includes costumes! It's time to let your freak flag fly - though be mindful of MOOP (Matter out of Place) by using the dryer test to make sure there are no flying feathers or sequins that will be left behind on the beach.

Got more questions? We've probably answered them in the FAQs.