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| Article Specs|
Article ID: 2812
Age Group: Adult
Posted: May 31st. 2000
Helpful Hints for Camping events
by Patricia Telesco
(with thanks to Kiwi Carlisle for sharing ideas!)
Find out what areas are designated as quite sites, and honor that boundary (note" this is a good choice of camping areas for families with children or those requiring a decent night's sleep). Trish Telesco
Find out where the drum circle and other major parts of the festival take place. These will be the noisiest camping areas, then put yourself where you'll be most comfortable.
Ask about the laws regarding daggers and knives. Some regions require that an athame be peace bonded or worn in a very open area, or possibly not brought at all. Note that in the last instance should you bring it anyway, legal authorities are well within their bounds to confiscate the "weapon"
Provide emergency information to someone in your camp (a friend or relative's phone number) or give it to the event coordinators
Pack rubbermaid or similar boxes with your event supplies. Not only does this keep things dry, but they become make-shift chairs when necessary.
Bring more than you think you need, especially water and toilet paper.
Find out if the festival has a "centering" area -- where you can sit down and adjust to the energies.
Bring a sun hat, sturdy shoes, and sunscreen. Wear shoes even if going skyclad to avoid injury.
Be sexually responsible. This is part of the "perfect love/perfect trust" code.
Be courteous and responsive to site staff. They know of what they speak and if they say "now" it means NOW!
Make a check list and review it at home as you pack, then again at the site when setting up. That way if essentials are missing you still have time to make a run to town.
Work cooperatively with other campsites. If someone needs extra tarp -- and you have some, for example, lend it to them. NOTE: This does not mean people can return this item or others in a damaged state. If someone helps you, don't abuse that trust.
Remain aware of people's personal space. Lightly clad people don't necessarily represent an open invitation for fondling -- it could just be HOT!
If at all possible have a water bucket, a fire extinguisher or other means of quickly putting out a fire, should one catch
Don't take candles or other fire sources into tents -- there are plenty of battery operated mechanisms for light that are far safer especially in tight spaces.
Remember to waterproof your tent before you camp, checking all seams and gear to be sure you have (a) stakes, (b) poles, (c) heavy duty rope, and (d) colored tape to mark the ropes so they're easily seen at night.
If a festival has fire codes, obey them diligently. For example, if torches must be at least 4' tall, don't try to use mini-tiki style torches. This is a safety issue and can become a legal issue should a local inspector decide to visit.
Be kind to your fellow campers -- practice good physical, emotional, and spiritual hygene.
Boil all water but for bottled water. This decreases stomach problems.
Tend to garbage immediately in whatever manner designated by the site (unless you like critters of all shapes and sizes showing up at your camp)
If it's a typically hot festival, bring salt tabs, a sun hat, and some type of water-cooling system so you don't suffer from heat exhaustion. And don't wear BLACK no matter how pagan sheik it may be -- this absorbs more heat.
Similarly cold events need adequate preparation. Bring boots, extra blankets and socks, a cloak or coat, and plenty of fire wood or other heating equipment (again, watch any portable heaters in proximity of the tent walls).
Bear in mind that some locations have temperature extremes. Look at a local weather forecast before you pack, then plan accordingly.
Other nice items: an altar set up, bottle opener, tooth picks, q-tips, duct tape, a sewing kit, small throw rugs (to wipe your feet on before going into the tent), identifying emblems for your campsite, a camping chair, and any other small items that equate to minor "creature comforts" that will make your stay more pleasant. I say small because few of us use moving trucks to go camping!
It's easier to camp with a group than alone as it decreases the amount each person must carry. For example, everyone can share the kitchen equipment rather than each person packing a portable kitchen. Note, however, this also means coordinating and communicating with all members of your group so you know who is responsible for bringing what items.
When you're done setting up, take a long walk of the site so you get your bearings. At night one tent looks a lot like another. This will also make it easier to find the activities you want to attend in a timely manner.
Know your plants -- don't camp in poison ivy (don't laugh, it's happened).
Don't camp too close to water -- flash floods have been known to happen.
Leave the camp in as good a condition, if not better, than when you came. It will make it easier for the event coordinator to get that site again, if they rent it. It will also make clean up much easier for the staff.
Prepare yourself spiritually before you go. Remember that each person handles events differently and you need to honor those differences, so "stay tuned up and tuned in"
Take some quiet time alone with the earth. Camping events offer a fantastic opportunity to return to nature's classroom. Don't overlook the chance.
Have fun! Laugh a lot, dance a lot, listen a lot, feel a lot and BE. Festivals are all about rediscovering self, others, tribe, and the greater family of all earth's citizens. Revel in it.
The Witches' Voice
May 29th., 2000
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