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The time has almost come.

After not one, but two postponements, Bass Coast Festival is gearing up for one of its biggest editions yet. From July 8th to 11th, the boutique music and arts fest returns to Merritt, B.C. on the shared traditional territories on the Nłeʔkepmx and Syilx nations.

Ahead of Bass Coast's long-awaited return, EDM.com has put together an insider's guide to help prospective attendees prepare for what's to come. And we've curated a few handy tips and tricks from the festival's organizers as well as trusted patrons. 

PACKING ESSENTIALS

When packing for any outdoor activity within Canada, it's essential to prepare accordingly for the weather. While the forecast may read sunny skies, you just never know when it will cloud over and downpour. That being said, we recommend you come prepared with extra socks, an umbrella and maybe even rain boots.

Here are some essentials that you don't want to leave home without:

  • Festival ticket
  • Photo ID (19+ event)
  • Food or money for vendors
  • Tent
  • Bedding: Sleeping bag, pillow, blanket
  • Sunscreen
  • Bugspray
  • Sunglasses
  • Swimwear
  • Proper footwear
  • Flashlight
  • Warm clothing/layers
  • Refillable water bottle

Insider's tip #1: "Remember to bring both day and night clothes," says Cam, a longtime Bass Coast attendee. "Think shade protection in the daytime and detachable warmth at night. You ideally want clothes that you can add or remove layers easily with at night since you can be hot at the dance floor and immediately cold walking between stages."

Each year, Bass Coast has a new theme. While you do not have to partake, it can be fun to participate. This year's theme is Future DecoBass Coast Festival defines Future Deco as a "vision in which the beauty of the past weaves into an unfolding future."

DIRECTIONS TO BASS COAST

FROM KELOWNA

● Take Hwy BC-97C to Merritt
● Once in Merritt, continue through onto the Princeton - Kamloops Hwy BC-97C
● Turn left on COLDWATER Rd.
● Turn right onto POOLEY Rd.
● Turn left onto Houston Rd.
● Turn left onto MIDDAY VALLEY Rd.
● Enter the festival site from the MAIN GATE*

FROM KAMLOOPS

● Take Hwy BC-5 S towards Merritt
● Take exit #286 from the Coquihalla hwy and head towards Merritt City Center along Princeton-Kamloops Hwy BC-97C
● Turn left on COLDWATER Rd.
● Turn right onto POOLEY Rd.
● Turn left onto Houston Rd.
●Turn left onto MIDDAY VALLEY Rd.
● Enter the festival site from the MAIN GATE*

FROM VANCOUVER

● Take Hwy BC-1 and then Hwy BC-5 N towards Merritt
● Once in Merritt, take exit #286, keep right at the fork, and head towards Merritt City Center along Princeton-Kamloops Hwy BC-97C
● Turn left on COLDWATER Rd.
● Turn right onto POOLEY Rd.
● Turn left onto Houston Rd.
● Turn left onto MIDDAY VALLEY Rd.
● Enter the festival site from the MAIN GATE*

*GATE: Please note that there are three gates: the MAIN GATE (general admission), A GATE (reserved sites, glamping, accessible) and STAFF GATE.

You can find each gate's hours of operation below. If you are not GA and need directions to your gate, navigate here.

Bass Coast gates and hours of operation. 

Bass Coast gates and hours of operation. 

BASS COAST FESTIVAL GROUNDS

Now that you know what to bring and how to get there, let's take a closer look at where you will be spending your weekend. As mentioned, Bass Coast is located on shared traditional territories on the Nłeʔkepmx and Syilx nations, or Thompson-Nicola N, BC V0K 1W0 as listed on Google Maps.

BASS COAST CAMPING

There are changes in the festival layout this year due to flood damage sustained in November 2021. Check out the site map below to note which areas are now out of bounds. A new campsite called Ventura is available this year to make up for lost space in Campground B. 

Bass Coast Festival 2022 site map.

Bass Coast Festival 2022 site map.

Free camping is included in all festival ticket prices. GA ticket-holders have access to campgrounds B and C. However, for an additional fee, there is the option to opt for reserved camping. All reserved sites are located in Campgrounds A and Ventura.

BASS COAST 2022 STAGES

Insider's tip #2: "Grab a floaty and float down the river to Slay Bay one afternoon," recommends James Stipes, a Bass Coast Street Team member. "It really is the best festival stage entrance ever."

Bass Coast features five main audiovisual stages, as well as one additional workshop stage called The Brain.

1. The Cantina
2. Main Stage
3. Slay Bay
4. The Cabin
5. Slowtempo

Insider's tip #3: "Look for the 'nightlife guard' chairs at each of the stages, located at the back of the dancefloor," says Stacey Forrester, Bass Coast Harm Reduction Manager. "That chair will have someone with a radio on it during peak times in case of an emergency."

More information about Bass Coast's harm reduction is at the bottom of this article.

Bass Coast
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THE BARS

Did someone say... liquid courage?

Bass Coast will offer four bars this year, all located within close proximity to the stages. To peruse the list of available drink options at each bar, navigate here.

1. The Cantina
2. Yarr Bar
3. Transistor Bar
4. Sky Bar

It's important to note that "all Bass Coast Bars, ICE, Showers, & The General Store are now CASHLESS," according to the festival's official website. "Accepted payment methods include Interac Debit Cards, Visa, Mastercard, American Express, JCB, Discover, Apple Pay and Google Pay. Independent food and artisan vendors will continue to accept cash or card."

BASS COAST 2022 LINEUP

Wait—before we get into it, here's a piece of advice.

Insider's tip #4: "My advice is don’t plan!" says Max Ullis, Bass Coast Music Curator. "The magic of festivals is discovering new things and the random adventures you end up on.” 

Whether you want to wing it or not, you should probably keep a pulse on who is performing. Bass Coast 2022 attendees will be treated to performances from the likes of Claude VonStroke, AceMoMa, Mikey Lion, The Funk Hunters, Smalltown DJs, Fort Knox Five, RUMPUS and The Librarian, among others.

Perhaps notable is a DJ set from Mat the Alien, who returns to the stage following a horrific mountain biking accident in 2020. 

Bass Coast 2022 lineup.

Bass Coast 2022 lineup.

Insider's tip #5: “This year is a dream line up for me," shares Andrea Graham, Bass Coast Co-Founder and Music Curator. "There are so many of my favourite artists from all over the world spanning many genres. I built a personalized schedule in the Bass Coast app so that I can try to catch as many of their sets as possible.”

You can check out the 2022 day-by-day schedule on the festival's website or download the official Bass Coast app.

BASS COAST WORKSHOPS

Besides the music, Bass Coast offers a variety of thought-provoking workshops. Some of the topics at The Brain Workshops include Story Mechanics, Why We Get Triggered And What To Do About It, while the Movement Workshops offer classes such as I Love Hula Hoops, Booty Luv and Contact Improvisation Dance, among others. 

The Brain Workshops 2022, Movement Workshops 2022.

The Brain Workshops 2022, Movement Workshops 2022.

THE ART

This year's art instillations and live artists are ready to take your festival experience to the next level. As you wander between stages and explore the festival grounds, don't forget to stop and smell the roses, so to speak. 

Insider's tip #6: "With 57 installations and 8 live artists, 2022 marks not only our largest showcase of art to date but the achievement of curatorial goals that we've had since the very beginning," recalls Liz Thomson, Co-Founder and Art Director.

"From suspended sculptural rings made of abandoned books that evoke the ancient giant trees that once stood on these soils," Thomson continues, "to a fully interactive version of DaVinci’s Ornithopter Flying Machine, the installations at Bass Coast this year invite you to explore the realms of the unseen, play and reimagine what’s possible."

MOOP

MOOP stands for "Matter Out Of Place," meaning anything that is left behind does not belong. Because Bass Coast takes place on a sacred land, it is of the utmost importance that the area is respected and everyone does their part when packing up on the last day.  

"When the party’s over, support your community by cleaning up the tiniest sparkle of MOOP (Matter Out of Place) from the festival grounds," a recent Instagram post reads.

HARM REDUCTION

Last, but most certainly not least, is harm reduction. No matter who you are and what you're into, it is always important to be prepared just in case something happens to you, someone you care about, or a stranger in need.

Insider's tip #7: “As soon as your tent is set up, do a lap around the site and find the first aid and the harm reduction space," encourages Stacey Forrester. "You never know when you might find someone needing a little support, and it's helpful if you know where to take them."

"Save the emergency help number into your phone," she continues. "This number will be active during the festival and is to be used in case of an emergency when you can't find anyone with a radio in sight.”

BASS COAST EMERGENCY LINE: 1-236-888-5559

Bass Coast Music Festival 2022 is officially sold-out online, but it's still possible to find a last-minute ticket on the official Bass Coast Ticket Exchange Facebook page.

FOLLOW BASS COAST FESTIVAL:

Website: basscoast.ca
Facebook: facebook.com/BassCoastFestival
Twitter: twitter.com/basscoastfest
Instagram: instagram.com/basscoastfest

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