There's a dozen music festivals coming up in Minnesota, and most all of them involve camping for the weekend. Here's what you need to keep in mind when you go to them.

I've been to nearly every music festival in the state over the past 20 years, and all of them have a similar feel when it comes to the camping part of it. If you're a newbie to the experience, you'll need to know these few things before you hit the road.

Music festivals pack people in as tight as they can. It's a party atmosphere and a completely different experience from staying at a family campground. Every kind of personality is always around you, and how much (or how little) fun you have is totally up to you.

  • Make sure you have all the passes required to enter the campground. most festivals require both a camping pass (wristband) and also a vehicle parking permit. if you only get a camping pass and not the vehicle permit, you're generally out of luck since you won't be able to get your vehicle inside.
  • Secure your belongings. You won't always be at your campsite, and when the big shows are playing, people start rummaging. Lock your valuable belongings inside a secure vehicle when you head to the shows, and before you go to bed.
  • Plan to spend a lot of money. Everything from food, showers and water costs an inflated amount of money. If you forget to pack something, it's likely they have it available to buy, but it's going to cost you.
  • Don't plan to get much sleep. It's a music festival and most of the attendees are ready to party. Once the final show of the day is done, the party comes back to the campground and continues for hours into the night. When the hot sun comes up in the morning, so do the people, and the partying continues.
  • Bring plenty of water to stay hydrated. This is even more of a must if you plan on drinking alcohol all weekend. Plan to drink up to 10 bottles of water per day, and stick to it. it'll help you feel much better the next day.
  • Be careful where you setup your tent. Don't pitch your tent anywhere near exhaust pipes of an RV or generator. Every year people die from carbon monoxide poisoning at festivals while camping in tents. Keeping your tent on the opposite side of the exhaust of an RV should keep you far enough away to be safe.

As always, enjoy yourself as music festivals are a blast! Enjoy the few days with your friends and great music in our beautiful Minnesota outdoors...winter will be back before we know it!