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Top 10 Highlights from the WayHome Music & Arts Festival

The sophomore WayHome festival kicked off at Burl’s Creek in Oro-Mendonte (about 90 minutes north of Toronto) this past weekend. Performances took place across four stages in a staggeringly large festival ground that brought together the best of music and art in one jampacked weekend. Over three days they were over 65 performances and 40,000 guests, so it’s possible you may have missed some of WayHome’s best moments. Here are our top ten:

1.     WayAway Campgrounds

The Fido turquoise and purple WayAway VIP campgrounds were one of the best advantages for VIP festival goers. Each souvenir tent came equipped and set up with two air mattresses, two sleeping bags and a night lamp, all of which you could take home after the weekend festivities were over. The campgrounds were also the closest to the festival grounds so you didn’t have to walk as long to get to a cool shaded area like the Barn or to your first set of the day.

2.     Unforgettable performances

Art-scene favourite FKA Twigs brought theatre into her edgy performance, Lindsey Stirling cradled her electric violin while running across the stage in a well-choreographed dance off with her bassist and the brothers of Rae Sremmurd spilled Hennessy over the stage while asking the crowd to yell expletives at their exes. 

3.     The Headliners

The headliners at any music festival are usually the talk of the town afterwards and WayHome didn’t disappoint this year. LCD Soundsystem played a lively set where Nancy Whang stole the show, Arcade Fire drew the largest crowd and exploded into fireworks and confetti while The Killers played everything from “Mr. Brightside” to “Human,” wooing the festival goers in the last performance of the weekend.

4.     Weather

Saturday morning at WayHome was not pretty with the glaring sun beginning its daylong fury at 7 am. However Sunday was mostly overcast and all was well. When the cool evening temperatures hit, the entire festival grounds transformed into a scene from Alice in Wonderland with the sculptures, stages, totems and people lit in every possible way imaginable.

5.     WayStyle

Festivals have become just as known for their style as their performances and WayHome was no exception. Never mind the heat, overcast or rain, people came ready to turn up decked out in LED lights, fringe, leather, neon, all kinds of denim to celebrate their festival style.

6.     The Barn

With a bar on the upper level, the massages and beauty bar on the lower level and airy lounge spots all around, The VIP-exclusive Barn was like the gift that kept on giving. The art on the interior and exterior of the building helped accentuate the structure while the rustic authenticity of the wood and cement floors highlighted The Barn as a shady refuge from the rest of the vast, sundrenched festival grounds.

7.     Massages and Yoga

And stretch 🙏🏻 #WayHomeFestival @wayhome @equinox #yoga #EQXToronto

A photo posted by Vicky Ellison (@vj_ellison) on

 If at all you were feeling a little out of it, a complimentary massage or morning yoga from Equinox at the Barn would perk you right up. Slots for the weekend booked up fast, so if you were interested, you needed to act quickly to reserve a spot.

8.     The WayBeauty Bar

Documenting the highlinghts of any music festival is a must. The WayBeauty Bar was a blessing to the festival goers offering make-up, hair and manicure services right in the middle of all the activity to ensure that you would never not be instagram-ready.

9.     Food

All the food outposts from The Drake Hotel stole the show but it was the picks from Drake Chinatown, like the Chilled Noodle Salad with green mango cashews and shrimp, and The Drake Café with their Drake Falafel that truly encapsulated elevated festival dining.

10.  Line-ups (or lack thereof)

 One of the perks of a VIP access is that you have to barely wait in a queue to get anywhere, be it the festival grounds, The Barn, the performances or the complimentary showers and phone charging stations, all of which ensured that you got the best festival experience without the usual grievances.