I remember seeing the lineup and knowing immediately that this was something I had to experience. This was back in 2014; I was 25. Acts like The Killers and Jack Johnson still held the top tier of headlining performers. While performers like Childish Gambino and Chance the Rapper were buried towards the bottom. But I remember convincing myself that I was going to the Hangout Festival that year. What I failed to consider, was that this would require planning, money, flights, etc. Time and energy my 25 year old self wasn’t ready to dedicate to something, even as amazing as Hangout Fest. So I balked. I sold my ticket last minute, at a loss, and I’ve lived the last 5 years regretting that decision.
This all circles back to Hangout Fest. I had been too timid to go alone, too lazy to plan, and too poor to justify the trip. Now that I have broken out of that structure of thinking, I’m eyeing my maiden trip to the Gulf Shores of Alabama. In the 5 years that have passed, the artist I wanted to see have disappeared from the lineup and been replaced by performers I’ve never heard of. I don’t know who Khalid, Travis Scott, or Vampire Weekend are, and those are the headliners! If I had been looking at this lineup 2 years ago, I wouldn’t even consider going. So why am I so determined to go this year?
When I got home I was fortunate enough to find work with WiGo; a company that shared my philosophy on traveling. Given the freedom to plan trips anywhere in the world and encouraged to seek places that are on our bucket lists, I centered in on the one spot that got away; my white whale of a festival: Hangout. I’m not too lazy to plan this time. Now I understood how essential that part is. I’m not too timid to go alone; in fact, I’m looking forward to it. I’ll be surrounded by thousands of like-minded people from all over the country. And through WiGo I had the opportunity to bring nine of those people together to share a condo for the weekend. We’ve never met, we are all from different locations, but we are beyond excited to meet and party on the beach all weekend. Sometimes all it takes is that common interest between people to manifest friendships that can last a lifetime.
I let Hangout slip away 5 years ago. I missed seeing Outkast, Bloody Beetroots, and Pretty Lights and I’ve regretted it for almost 5 years. But I’d not made an attempt to redeem my decision until this year. With a lineup that I’m mostly unfamiliar with, and with friends I’ve never even met, I am confident that this will not just be as good as the event I missed all those years ago, I’m confident it will surpass it.
Retuning from a year abroad living in a van (by choice), Cameron, founder of Dirt Bag Vans, is back in adventure mode. Cameron has traveled quite a bit in his life from family trips to Mexico, Habitat for Humanity missions in Hungary, Visiting friends in Thailand, creating documentaries in Japan, and of course the local weekend getaways all over the USA. Cameron offers WiGo Members a unique combination of personal insight mixed with independence and belonging.