There’s just no place quite like the Sherwood Forest. More than 40,000 hippies, lovers, friends, trance fairies, bassheads and families gathered together in the woods of Rothbury, Michigan, to experience the true magic that is Electric Forest. Attendees of this year’s event can expect four days of sun, possible rain and mud, and the overwhelming feeling of transformation and positivity.
Electric Forest is a literal trip in wonderland for the senses. Everywhere you look there are new secret goodies to discover, a giant sculpture to marvel at, or friendly face beaming with colors ready to share in the experience with you. After the sun sets, the freaks come out, the lights begin to flicker, and all the real fun begins. Each evening spent wandering the technicolor trees of Sherwood Forest only uncovers more magic to behold. Just when you think you’ve discovered it all, there’s more to be seen.
It is difficult to choose between all the experiences available to you, but we have tried to narrow it down for you with our top 15 bucket list items that should help with your journey this year:
1. Take a stroll through the Forest, both during the day and at night
Part of what makes this event so special is that there are so many hidden aspects of the event that can be discovered. Make it a point of your journey to see the forest in its entirety in the sunshine and after the lights flicker on. You never know what you’ll stumble across. The art installations really come alive after dark and that makes everything that much more beautiful.
2. Experience an Eforest Wedding at the Chapel
The Chapel in the trees is a host to both real weddings and fake (PLURR) ones. Share in the experience of seeing loved ones join together in happiness.
3. Take a trip to each of the 9 stages throughout the festival
Step out of your comfort zone and see different vibes of the unique genres that exist at forest and take it all in. Enjoy every moment.
4. Watch a set of an artist you had no idea existed
Scroll down your lineup and choose a random artist you know nothing about, something new is always refreshing and opens your eyes to new beats and possibilities.
5. Interact with characters who roam throughout the Forest
There are so many different characters who all have something to bring you into the fantasy centered environment of the event. This will not only enhance your journey, but create a playful atmosphere that will be even more full of fun. Spark a conversation with one of them and see where it goes.
6. Catch someone playing the piano
Every year at forest there is a piano that is placed in the middle of it that is an open place to share musicality with others. So many people are incredibly talented and love to share their gift, so at one point along your trip, stop and enjoy the music a stranger has to offer.
7. Give a gift to the Giving Tree that exists within the Forest and take one in return
Within the event there are actually two giving trees (one that is the official tree and one that is unofficial which is situated close the front gates of the forest). The concept of the tree is to give something that you think someone will love and cherish and take something another has left to share as well. Find both trees within the forest and share a gift and receive something in the spirit of love and friendship.
8. Participate in a Scavenger Hunt
Take a trip to the hangar and speak with one of the characters or workers, soon you will find that they will give you clues that will guide you to a scavenger hunt. If you are looking for a new adventure and to see parts of the forest you would not stumble upon otherwise, this is your chance. Rumors of speakeasys and hidden rooms will most likely become your reality at the end of the hunt.
9. Join in and conduct a trade at the Trading Post
Inside the event there is a trading post where you can bring items to barter for essentially and trade for something else that speaks to you. Participate in a trade but note that: no plastic or “Made in China” items will be accepted. Take a trip into our literal history and get crafty with handmade items to exchange.
10. Find a Fairy House, give a gift, and take a memory with you forever
Along with the giving tree, there are additionally little fairy houses attached to trees that consistently hold little treasures that other foresters leave behind. Open their tiny doors and see what lies within, and leave something in return for someone else to find. A lot of these houses usually have very sentimental pieces inside them so give something that will enhance someone else’s experience while helping them in their own journey.
11. Get your yoga on and join a morning session to start your festival day off right
Each morning there is an invigorating yoga session prior to the event beginning held at Tripolee. Prepare your body for the day by getting your zen on and stretching it out before your long day ahead.
12. Attend an RV After Party
After the sets end in the forest, several after parties will be keeping the party going in the RV area of the camp. Prior years have included some legendary B2B sets and surprise guest artists that you wouldn’t typically expect, so make it a point to stay up a little later at least one of the nights and check out this unique aspect of the festival. There’s no doubt these will be legit lit places to chill after the music inside ends and the tunes will keep your booty bouncing all night.
13. Spend some time exploring the Hangar
The Hangar is a space that has so many activities and hidden gems lurking around its corners. If you are looking for something to do during the day before your first “must see” set happens, head on over and explore, get a tattoo, or see what your future holds.
14. Attend a session at the Brainery
The Brainery within the campgrounds has a huge variety of workshop type sessions that happen all weekend. Make it a point to pick a session and expand your horizons whether it be learning about something new you haven’t ever thought of looking into, or opening up yourself to others. If you are needing an activity to fill up your day and are bored of just hanging out at your campsite, this is the place to expand your mind and heart.
15. FIND CARL
This is a mystery you will have to discover for yourself. Where is he?
More than anything else, the overall feeling of positivity and appreciation that fills Sherwood with love is the best part of this festival. Throughout your experience, prepare for strangers to shout “Happy Forest!” with smiles beaming from one face to another. Get ready for the kind of place people can’t wait to return to year in and year out.
From the artists to the vendors, and fans young and old, Electric Forest inspires something incredibly special. It’s a vibe that is cool to get caught up in, and once you’ve got it, get ready for it to be infectious.
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