Phases of the Moon encompassed everything that is right within the festival community: Beautiful people coming together to celebrate life, art and music.I left the festival feeling grateful, enlightened, and inspired. The sense of community circulating the festival grounds was undeniable and incredibly moving. The crowd was a seamless mix of young and old, each generation bringing something different to the table. Throughout the entire weekend, energy levels were high and minds were in sync. This defined unity became the underlying melody that played throughout the weekend.
Upon entering festival grounds, I was greeted by an array of colorful ribbons and silky fabrics weaved across the sky in an intricate design, creating what was called, The Sanctuary. The Sanctuary was a dream-like oasis, which offered various transformational workshops throughout the weekend. This allowed people to escape from the festival frenzy and focus on relaxation and rejuvenation, through healing practices like yoga, and meditation. Aside from the sanctuary, there were various other art installations scattered among festival grounds, along with a huge field designated for disc golf.
Yes- the waiting situation the first night was a bit irritating, but it was hardly the calamity social media made it out to be. By the time Friday rolled around, yesterday’s line was merely a distant memory; a minor hiccup in the execution of a magical fest. Given the circumstances of the storm the night before, the festival crew did an amazing job turning the weekend around. Their continual effort to keep the ground dry and mud-free far exceeded my expectations. In fact, the bales of hay and scattered mulch only added to the ambiance, bringing back childhood memories of hayrides and corn mazes.
Sitting in the grass watching Gov’t Mule was unlike anything I had ever experienced. I breathed in the crisp September air while the lingering summer sun warmed my bones. I saw two old men digging with twigs in the dirt, giggling with each other the way small children do. A scene so ridiculous, you couldn’t help but join in their laughter. I watched a dozen different people pause to play soccer with a wandering, yellow-haired toddler, spilling their drinks and goofing around just to make the boy smile. Something about the look in his eyes took me back to summer nights playing kick-the-can in the old neighborhood. A shirtless man teetered across a tightrope, wooing the crowd with his meticulous turns and tricks. Meanwhile, a band of gypsies draped in fringe and lace danced through the crowd, turning heads and breaking hearts with dazzling eyes and mischievous smiles. Mesmerized, I gazed on as young lovers embraced one another and aged lovers shared a dance.
Time stood still as I idled somewhere in between nostalgia and unimpeded bliss. It felt like coming home after a long trip, or a glass of wine after a tough day; like playing catch with your dad or hearing your favorite Led Zeppelin song on the radio—it just felt right. In that captivating moment, I felt alive. It was god damn beautiful.
Phases of the Moon held moments like these; timeless moments that remind us to slow down and enjoy the simple things in life. Appreciate all that you have, and seek meaning with each rising sun. Smile as often as possible, and spill your beer if it means making a kid laugh. Be good to yourself and be good to each other. And always take time to cherish those special moments that make life worth living.