Here in the North West sector of our country, the rain has let up (sort of), school’s out (for those who are students and don’t go to U of O or any other school on the god forsaken quarter system), and people are trading in pants and flannels for shorts and tanks (they’re not), which means… It’s time for Sasquatch, the Northwest’s premier annual music festival!
For those of you who are unfamiliar, Sasquatch is a three-day, outdoor music festival stationed on the cliffs of the Colombia River Gorge. The venue, known as the Gorge Amphitheater, is enormous and houses five stages of varying sizes, as well as an array of concession stands, advertisement booths, and vendors. The campsite, which for most is about a ten minute walk from the concert grounds, is a sprawling octagon which is subdivided into regular and premier camping sections.
This year’s headliners are M.I.A., Outkast, Queens of the Stone Age, and The National. Other artists of note are The Violent Femmes, Major Lazer, and the always disturbing Die Antwoord (go ahead and click the link if you’re not familiar).
As a guy who went to Sasquatch last year, and will be going again this year, I have a few tips to share:
Drinking: Drink up, but watch out for security. Drinking is tolerated, nay, encouraged, in the campground, but for some reason security insists on confiscating any and all beer bongs, dizzy bats, and other miscellaneous alcohol receptacles they encounter that are not cups. Alcohol is not allowed inside the venue itself, and security will check all bags either very thoroughly or extremely lazily depending on their levels of dedication, so it is wise to disguise your alcohol containers or place them very close to your private parts. (Personally, I will be using an empty sunscreen container to port my grain alcohol into the venue).
Drugs: Bring them with you, the skeezy drug dealers that roam the campground looking for desperate customers will often charge you double what their product is worth, or sell you something that doesn’t work. And needless to say, these also need to be kept very, very close to your genitals to avoid detection by frisky security guards.
Cost: Sasquatch is easily one of the most expensive music festivals around. Tickets are about $350 (they can be found for significantly more or less on craigslist, depending on peoples’ last minute changing circumstances). Since the festival is in the middle of nowhere, gasoline is also a significant expenditure for most parties. To top it all off, the food, alcohol, and drug supply necessary to sustain a person for the 3-5 day total experience tends to run up a hefty bill. While sneaking into this festival is both fiscally appealing and quite doable, it is also very time intensive and risky. First, one must hide in the trunk of a car for the duration of the slow-moving entrance line, as persons without wristbands are not allowed even into the campsite. Then, each day, one must take a very wide route around the venue and through the private vineyard that borders it to the rear, all the while evading detection by a brigade of security patrolmen, then finding a clear coast and hopping the (mostly) barbed wire fence. I’m not entirely sure of the consequences if caught, as I got luckily last year, but I am sure they range from mild to very severe, depending on the disposition of the security guard that catches you.
Anyhow, Sasquatch is a great time, best of luck to all who are going, I will (probably not) see you there!