Lightning in a Bottle 2017 was a magical experience! This was my first year attending the EDM music festival and it did not disappoint. Lighting in a Bottle (LIB) is an annual festival held at the San Antonio Reservoir in Bradley, California. This was the first year water levels returned to a swimmable depth since the festival moved to Bradley in 2014. The sun was shining and love was flowing. Every music festival I’ve covered has its own vibe. My first impression of Lightning in a Bottle has set a new standard of expectations.
Music festival culture is different depending on location, music, and event programming. Lightening in a Bottle is primarily EDM, but sprinkled in you’ll find an acoustic set randomly being played on the sidelines by indie artists. There’s programming that includes yoga, meditation, horticulture, spirituality, mindfulness—a little something for everyone. And of course there’s festi fashion. This is a venue where dirt and all sorts of shiet can get tangled in your outfit. The humans of LIB are encouraged to bring out their unique sense of style to stay protected but also look fierce as fuck. So much sexiness runneth around. It’s a place to feel liberated from the constraints of our day to day hustle.
Music headliners included some of my faves and a few new artists I discovered while bouncing from stage to stage.
Bonobo Kaytranada Bomba Estéreo Bassnectar Dirtwire Psymbionic Bob Moses Big Wild Rufus Du Sol
Camping is another big part of the festival culture. When I got to LIB it was night, and I didn’t pay for car camping, so it was an adventure to walk in and find a good spot. I walked around a bit with my tent until I came across a nice piece of dirt. This spot had an amazing view of the water and mountains, and those golden sunsets were magical.
The landscape of the San Antonio Reservoir makes for a gorgeous environment. Day or night the rolling hills and water get you going. Depending on where you set up camp you got a little bit of a journey to get into the festival. But along the way you get meet and see all your neighbors that have setup their encampment. Every area has its own vibe and the community you build is an experience in itself. I like to go back and forth throughout the four-day festival. So, depending on the time of day there was always a little something extra to experience. My favorite time to explore was around 1am. Everyone is hyped from the day and people are just vibin’.
For me, this was my first time at Lightning in a Bottle and I decided to explore the festival solo. My decision to go was a last-minute, “Treat Yo Self” decision for my birthday. With my hectic day to day life in San Francisco I needed to reconnect with myself. I believe in acknowledging my birth throughout the month of May. Taking the time to go within and reflect on my life choices of the last year. LIB was a phenomenal decision to be with myself but surrounded by complete strangers as that month came to a close. I loved being on my own timeline and not needing to check-in with anyone. Getting up and doing what I wanted, when I wanted. Taking time to reconnect with nature and the gorgeous landscape around me.
This was my first time at Lightning in a Bottle, but it will most definitely not be my last. Whether you’ve heard of LIB or are reading about it for the first time on my website, I highly recommend checking out lighteninginabottle.org to see if this festival can refill your soul as much as it has mine. The energy I came back to San Francisco with is exactly what I needed after a very long year. I believe in taking time to do you and want to encourage more people to venture out of their comfort zone and do something spontaneous! Hope you all enjoy this post, my pics, and playlist. Don’t forget to press play. Enjoy.