9 Tips for Attending Summer Festivals

Disclosure Compensation9 Tips for Attending Summer Festivals

Summer is finally here! That means its time for summer vacations, weekends at the beach or pool and one of my favorites – Summer Festivals! Here in Minnesota, where summers tend to be short, we like to cram in a LOT of summer festivals. Everyone wants to take advantage of the summer weather while it’s here. Every weekend we seem to have several to choose from whether they are old fashioned county fairs, music festivals, art festivals, or other city-wide or town-wide celebrations.

If you plan to head to any summer festivals this year, these tips will help you plan ahead, enjoy yourself and get the most out of your festival experience.

Summer Festivals Collage

9 Tips for Attending Summer Festivals

1. Make a Plan – While you can still have fun if you just “wing it”, planning ahead can make the day more enjoyable and stress free. Look up details of the event ahead of time so you can verify when it starts, if there is an admission charge (you might be able to pay less if you buy tickets ahead of time), and a map of the venue itself.

2. Arrive Early – I know you might prefer sleeping in on a summer day, but there are advantages to arriving early. You can beat the crowd and have a more peaceful experience in the morning hours. Plus, if you arrive before noon you can enjoy the cooler morning weather. If you’re parking at the event, you’ll have an easier time the sooner you get there.

MN State Fair

3. Public Transportation – Speaking of parking, you can skip having to deal with it by taking public transportation to the festival. Check with your local transit authority or on the festival’s web site for free or advanced fares for festival attendees. Our local MTA offers free printable passes that can be used for transportation to many of our summer events.

4. Dress Comfortably – You will enjoy yourself much more if you feel comfortable. Wear clothes that are easy to move in and be sure your shoes are good for walking. Your killer heels might look great with your sundress, but do you really want to walk for blocks and blocks in them?

Polka band

5. Protect Yourself from Summer Weather – Summer means sun and that should prompt you to wear sun protection! Apply sunscreen before you get to the festival and if you plan to stay for more than a couple of hours, bring it along to reapply later. Don’t forget to protect your lips with lip balm and maybe consider a hat to shield your head. That summer heat can also lead to hydration so pack a water bottle and drink from it often.

String Backpack

6. Wear a Backpack – Now that I just mentioned bringing sunscreen and a water bottle, you’ll probably want something to put them in. A backpack is a good option because you’ll be able to keep your hands free and you’ll also have room to store any additional goodies you find at the festival and want to bring home.

7. Bring Cash – Chances are you’ll want to enjoy food and drink from vendors at the fair and maybe buy a few crafts or a piece of artwork. While you may be able to use your credit or debit card, some vendors are likely to be cash only.

Hills Bros Coffee Truck

8. Enjoy Freebies – Luckily you may not need cash OR credit card for some things at the festival. Some of our favorite festival stops are for the freebies! This weekend we visited Grand Old Day in St. Paul and stopped by the Hills Bros. Coffee truck. They are traveling to festivals around the country this summer and offering a free cup of coffee made with their new compostable single serve pods. These pods break down to become nutrients for the soil when processed in a composting facility. You may have seen some of my tweets with the #BrewAndRenew hashtag!

Hills Bros Coffee Truck Grand Ole Day

9. Try Something New – We enjoyed trying the new Hills Bros. Coffee and there are lots of other new things you can try at a festival. It’s the perfect time to try a new food. If you’re attending with friends you can take turns each buying a new food and dividing it up so everyone can give it a try. You’ll be able to work your way through many more new things by sharing! Festivals are also a perfect time to listen to new kinds of music without having to sit through an entire concert. Not crazy about what you’re hearing? – – Just move on to the next one.

Do you have any plans to attend summer festivals this year? I would love to hear where you’ll be going or if you have any tips that I missed on my list!

9 Tips for Attending Summer Festivals - Make your summer fair or festival trip more fun when you plan ahead!

thriftyjinxy@live.com' About Chrysa

Chrysa is the founder and owner of ThriftyJinxy.com, a site dedicated to living a fabulous life on a frugal budget. Her approach is that by spending less on the boring everyday stuff, you can have more money to splurge on the things you REALLY want, whether it’s travel, fashion, electronics – you name it! Chrysa is married, has a 8-year old nephew she dotes on, as well as three lovable cats and a big sweetie of a German Shepherd.


  1. These are great tips! I especially love the “try something new”. I’m trying to get my kids to try something new on our outings.

  2. Awesome tips! Bringing cash is a very important tip…I hardly ever have cash as I use my debit card a lot, but you are right sometimes they only accept cash. I need to find some Summer festivals to go to this year!

  3. Getting there early is key. Otherwise you might as well stay home. You’ll just be at the very edge of everything.

  4. I absolutely love going to a festival. It’s so much fun I don’t know what I like about it I just love going to them. I can’t wait to go to a few this summer.

  5. We love festivals and fairs and there are a lot of them around here in the summer. It is so important to dress comfortably!

  6. We haven’t attended any really, but this would be a blast to add to our summer bucket list!

  7. Great tips! We will be attending our local Strawberry festival next week and will definitely have to get there early for the parade. There’s never enough parking. 😊

  8. I love going to festivals they are so much fun!! These are great tips for enjoying summer time festivals and also other festivals all year round.

  9. My whole family loves attending festivals in the summer! So much great food and fun! I agree, arrive early!

  10. I always make sure to bring a backpack, so I can put all the free goodies they hand out somewhere. And its also great for holding snacks, sunscreen, and anything else you may need too.

  11. These are fantastic tips for attending Summer festivals. Appreciate you sharing some tips for others so they can enjoy summer easier!

  12. These are all excellent tips. You really should try something new whenever you go to any sort of fest, whether it’s a new ride or game or a food.

  13. Summer is my favorite time to attend outdoor concerts and festivals. I always make sure to pack plenty of sunscreen and plenty of water.

  14. These are really great tips. Attending festivals is one of my favourite parts of summer. They’re just so much fun.

  15. annb10@rogers.com' Ann Bacciaglia says:

    I would love to go to a festival this summer. I like to go a little early and get to know the layout.

  16. pumga69@gmail.com' Lisa Bristol says:

    I am going to my first festival this summer. I am so excited to go. I am packing a change of clothes and bringing a backpack.

  17. I need to start carrying a backpack! It would be so much easier than my oversized purse filled with the needs of four kids!

  18. I love going to festivals! They’re always a ton of fun. I agree about getting there early though. I always try to get there early to avoid all the rushes.

  19. Summer festivals are awesome for our family fun days! These are all great ideas to make our trips even better this year. I need to remember about bringing cash. I’ve messed that one up before. It’s easy to forget. 😉

  20. Great tips. I love summer outings. As you said always protect yourself from the summer weather. Lots of sunscreen. It’s a must.

  21. savvysavingcouple@gmail.com' Amy Desrosiers says:

    Great tips. We always try to arrive early to summer events too.

  22. shartmaniam@gmail.com' Susan Hartman says:

    Wonderful tips. I have to remember to bing my backpack. It makes life so much more comfortable than my purse.

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