How to create your own Festival & speak the Lingo!

own festival

I am a big festival fan, be it that the festivals I tend to favour are smaller, and more arts focused than say Reading or Leeds – but none the less a good festival is a great place to be!

Interestingly there are a lot of people who LOVE festivals as well (which isn’t much of a surprise) including Lucozade Energy – who after a busy summer at many many festivals decided to produce a festival dictionary! Fear not this is not a standard dictionary that you used to carry to English classes in school – oh no, this is a #YESMoment Festival Dictionary which showcases the way language has evolved amongst young people!

It is basically a listing of slang words us young in’s use whilst at festivals (I refuse to believe at 22 I am no longer a young person – although I have a feeling this dictionary spoke to mainly under 18s!) It has been collated with the help of Tony Thorne (Language and Innovation Consultant at King’s College London and author of The Dictionary of Contemporary Slang) & Pepstar (Rapper and Award-Winning MC).

Now when I got sent this dictionary I thought it would be words I was pretty used too – such as Immense (A word used to describe something as really good or great) or Laterz (Another word for saying goodbye or sometimes used in a dismissive manner). Obviously these are words that I used many a time when I was 15 (..okay I still use some of them now!) & hear being said by teenagers all across the country BUT then I found some terms that I genuinely have never seen or heard before in my life!

Flashpacker – A festival-goer that has flashy or expensive equipment or accessories.

Example: There is no way that flashpacker is going to risk getting muddy!

Gramper – Refers to an older generation festival-goer.

Example: Look at that gramper over there!

Raggo, ragoflex – A word used to describe something that is reckless or provocative.

Example: Can you believe him? He’s acting raggo!

Vamping – A word meaning ‘showing off’.

Example: That group are just vamping now!

Xippie – A generation X Hippie that loves festivals.

Example: That guys is definitely a xippie, he’s having a great time!

To say I suddenly felt VERY old would be a understataement – in fact I suddenly realised that I am slowly and surely turning into my parents who try to sound ‘Hip & cool’ by using words such as LOL and predrinking in an attempt to ‘hang with the kids’!

However if you are planning of working in the field of Festivals then maybe you would like to know all the lingo that apparently ‘everyone’ says, or you may be reading this going ‘I know all these words already’ and I am obviously showing my age and the fact I am no longer a student! Either way you can download the dictionary for free here & I think it would pretty amazing if you tried to get some of these terms into your next assignment (if you do please drop me a tweet!)

Whilst this idea is all fun and games, if you are seriously thinking about heading into Festival Management there is a great thing to be said about understanding the customer and attendees who will be at your event. Access All Areas have a fantastic piece in their November magazine about how to start your own Festival.

The consensus of this piece is the need to come up with something that is both original but also financially viable, there are hundreds of festivals held all year round across the UK so it is important to do your research, learn about potential competitors & think about long-term goals.

Along with the tedious, but mightily important, health and safety & licensing information that you will have to learn and follow – Jo Vidler says it is very important to ‘not give up & to surround yourself with like-minded people’. Running and creating a festival is like starting up any business, which means it is important to really prepare and plan. The Access All Areas piece stresses that you cannot go into starting a festival thinking you will make millions – it is hard work but if you are set on running your own then of course GO FOR IT!!

So do you know your Flashpacker from your Gramper? AND if you are planning your own Festival or event – whats the best thing about the whole experience? 


**I did get sent some Lucozade freebie’s alongside the dictionary – including a very fetching bright red bumbag (something that is vital for all festivals!) Take that how you will but all the opinions above are my own!**

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