Do not sleep on the early acts

From Saturday’s openers (Nashville songwriter Lilly Hiatt and ethereal act Michael Nau) to Sunday’s master storytellers, the Secret Sisters and no-nonsense rock ‘n’ rollers Thelma & the Sleaze, these are not-to-be missed moments. Do yourselves a favor and hit up an early brunch and hightail it to Riverfront Park stat.

Bring a blanket, but …

… Be nice. You’re allowed blankets, sheets, and towels for lawn hang time but don’t go claiming your space in front of the stage unless you want your goods trampled on and, embarassingly, to get called out by the powers that be. Blankets and such are welcome closer to the middle to the back of the lawns but not ringside, fam.

Stay hydrated, for free

Not only can you bring along your own sealed water bottle, but also an empty bottle that can be filled up all day and night at the festival’s free, filtered hydration stations. Hurray for H20.

Bring your kin

High Water is super family friendly, admitting kids under six for free. But there’s also a soft-turf playground next to the Refuge (a shaded, beer-servin’, rockin’ chair-havin’ area), plus a Natural Life Parent Comfort Station for mamas to go nurse and change the kiddos; it comes complete with refrigeration.

Drink Swimmin’ Time

Oh, and don’t forget to sip on Shovels and Rope’s new signature beer, Swimmin’ Time Lager, from Commonhouse Aleworks. The collab benefits the community via nonprofit Metanoia, which uses an asset-based approach to eliminating child poverty in North Charleston.


Sunblock, point-and-shoot cameras, small purses and totes (under 14″x11″x5″) with no more than one pocket.

Not allowed

Food and drink, booze, drugs, umbrellas, coolers, lawn chairs, picnic baskets, lasers, glowsticks, glitter (yes, glitter), confetti (you heard me), silly string (because #environment, obv), spray paint, inappropriate headdresses (thank you, cultural appropriation police, thank you), glass containers, scooters, and more.

May or may not be allowed

Selfie sticks. It’s up to staff’s discretion, so maybe rely on the old-fashioned ask-a-stranger-to-take-your-pic method.

For full do-and-don’t-do deets, go to