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Amsterdam’s Practical Approach To Harm Reduction? Free Water For All!

Water bottle being filled.
Water is crucial for festival goers!

Come with us on a little journey. You’re at a show dancing your face off, when suddenly you realize you’re thirsty. Your friends don’t have any water either so you’re forced to go off in search of some high quality H20. The line for the one drinking fountain is insanely long, so you resign yourself to paying for a water bottle. The line is slightly less awful so you’re willing to deal with it. You finally get to the cashier and request a water bottle, only to find out the bottle is $5. You begrudgingly pay it but walk away fuming at how much you just paid for something that flows freely in certain areas of the world. Rest assured, this trend is slowly coming to an end.

USC Events has been awesome lately about having ample free water stations at their shows, and Amsterdam just upped the ante by requiring that ALL festival organizers provide free water in the form of 1 tap for every 150 attendees in order to receive licenses. We think that that this is a fantastic idea as it has been proven that the simple act of providing easy access to water helps prevent hospitalizations and worse at festivals and shows. Ravers are becoming better educated and are realizing that stopping to drink water is important, and it’s great to see organizers and authorities responding in kind by making water access more available.

Dancing in the hot sun is fun but it also means your body loses nutrients faster and the need to replenish them increases. We are absolutely thrilled by the precedent being set by Amsterdam and hope other festivals will start taking steps forward rather than backward to encourage hydration. We can only hope that in the future more and more festivals take a brave approach to harm reduction so that we can all keep dancing for years to come.

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Written By

Lizzy has been raving since the wee age of 14 after being grounded for a month for having rave fliers in her bag. Like her other love, snowboarding, what was supposed to be "a phase" has become an essential part of her life and she is excited to see a new generation developing the same love.

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