Now that the Folk Fest is over and I’ve recovered a bit, I thought I would check in with you all and update everyone. Folk Fest is one of my favourite times of the whole year. I love sitting outside on the hill at Gallagher Park listening to music I love and discovering new artists. A lot of my family and close friends go, so it’s always special to see them all there. Going with them is definitely a tradition at this point. I have so many great memories of sitting on a tarp on the hill, listening to music and spending time with my favourite people. It’s amazing. If you haven’t been before, I would definitely recommend checking it out next year. It’s worth it.
Now I’m sure by this point some of the more skeptical among you are wondering why I gush about a music festival on a blog about frugality. Aren’t music festivals expensive to go to? Likely. How do I get around that? I volunteer. Volunteering is one of my favourite strategies for experiencing great things on a cheap or free basis. Folk Fest is no different. By volunteering, I get into the festival for free and I get six free meals over the course of the four days. I also get to see a different side of the festival than I would as a patron, which I love. My volunteer role has me meeting performers, which I would never get to do otherwise, and interacting with all other kinds of cool people. There is really only one tiny downside, which is that sometimes I have to miss music I want to see, but even that is not impossible to overcome. If I plan ahead of time, I can usually swap shifts with other people on my team so that I can see the music I want. Basically, to me, volunteering for Folk Fest is a win-win-win-win-win from a happiness and a frugality standpoint.
This year, I still included a line item in my budget for $100 to spend at Folk Fest. Why? Well, I really enjoy Folk Fest and I wanted to be able to do some fun things, like have a beer in the beer gardens or buy a CD if I really like a performer. So, how did I do? Well, I bought a few things:
- Drinks in the beer gardens with friends
- An AWESOME Folk Fest hat (I also needed a hat, so this purchase was a win-win)
- A couple of snacks, coffees, etc.
However, I was well able to stay within my budget. I am happy to report that I only spent $77 over the course of the weekend! To give you some context, the amount of money I spent on the whole weekend is about the same cost as a ticket for one day. I’m definitely pleased with those results!