as you all know by now, lightning in a bottle was an awe-inspiring festival that we left feeling truly transformed. set in bradley, california this is a place where people of all ages, and all walks of life, came together to learn, celebrate, and get inspired. this festival is unlike your typical festival. this is a transformational festival that was created with more intention than we’ve ever experienced. what makes lightning in a bottle different from your typical “commercial festival” is the intention it brought with it. this wasn’t a place you go to party your ass off and lose your mind. this is a festival you go to broaden your horizons, learn new things, and dive into new experiences. from the architecture, to the learning workshops, to the uniquely themed hidden stages, to the vegan cuisine, to the constant effort to “leave no trace” and conserve, this festival truly should be a model for all other festivals to come.
[photography credit all the way thru: @brookklynphoto]
lightning in a bottle set the stage for many to live out their true authentic selves. the degree of self-expression was something we really valued at this festival. people were not dressing in ridiculous outfits for the status, the attention, or an instagram post but rather to express themselves freely away from a society that robs us of that. free of judgement, this was a place with almost no rules but so much intention. lightning in a bottle has found that balance of having laid back rules, yet maintaining a safe and meaningful environment for all of its attendees.
throughout the weekend we learned the importance of cherishing those around you. when you are out in the middle of the desert for 4 days, you’re gonna need people to lean on. with the vast mountains and beautiful lake as the background, lightning in a bottle was the perfect place to meet other like-minds and share your journey. when you are in a place built on so much intention, it’s hard NOT to have a meaningful conversation with a stranger. everyone was genuinely curious about each others’ journeys and quick to offer support and insight. i’ve been to many festivals and shows, but the lightning in a bottle crowd takes the cake for being the most supportive, real, genuine people.
going to lightning in a bottle, we decided that we were there to learn. with the music as our background, we explored many areas of the festival, stopping whenever something caught our eye. this wasn’t just a festival with many stages and vendors between, this festival had almost everything you could possibly explore. equipped with workshops, healing and resting sanctuaries, a trading post, yoga classes, sound healing sessions, vegan cooking classes, a 5k, and many areas to share your art: lightning in a bottle set the tone that you don’t just come here for the music. you come here to learn about yourself, share your gifts, and transform.
although stacked with a killer lineup, the focus of this festival was not the music. with breathtaking tunes as the background, the focus of lightning in a bottle was: creativity, self expression, love, and transformation. with music festivals, everyone comes with different intentions and purposes. i’m not here to say that lightning in a bottle didn’t have people who were just there to party, because there were. but, those people quickly learned that that’s not what it was about. being around so many positive, uplifting change-makers, it’s hard to be the drunk, bumbling, idiot in a valley filled with people who want to change the world.
one thing about lightning in a bottle that meant a lot to us, was its conscious efforts. at every water station, there was a sign asking people to conserve and be thankful for the gift of water. WATER IS LIFE PEOPLE. i’m not sure why we still have to be told these things, but i am very grateful that lightning in a bottle had everyone thinking about conserving and protecting our earth. i’ll never forget as one of the late night sets ended, the DJ began to play the “clean up song” and everyone in the crowd picked up trash. how awesome is that?!! we danced and partied all night, then ended with making sure we left the area better than we found it.
the efforts behind this festival is something we will forever be grateful for. everything about this place was truly magical and that doesn’t just happen by accident. this festival is the product of many people coming together to create a space for everyone to express, learn, love, create, inspire, and transform. thank you lightning in a bottle for teaching us how to have a wild time while also being mindful, intentional, and true to ourselves. this weekend was something we will never forget and you can be sure that we will be back for more.
love & light,
good vibes created by:
the desert iris team