WeWork Summer Camp – the all inclusive festival for techies
I had the privilege of acquiring a free ticket to this years WeWork Summer Camp, which usually takes place in New York. This year, the international co-working studio brought the party to Tunbridge Wells (that well known party place).
I had no idea what to expect, other than there were lots of activities throughout the day, and some excellent live acts playing in the evening (Florence & The Machine, Two Door Cinema Club and Penguin Prison being the highlight).
The best part about this festival is it’s all inclusive. That’s right – that includes food, drinks, and a tent set up for you. Tickets start around £395 I think, but there were plenty of 50-75% discount codes floating around.
So where to start in writing about my experience:
Camping in style
The setting was Eridge Park in Tunbridge Wells. We arrived on Friday afternoon and were allocated a tipi tent which was amazing – all ready set up! All we had to bring was a camp bed and sleeping bag, which meant we could dump our stuff and go in search of entertainment.
To put it mildly, I’m not a huge fan of festivals (anyone who knows me has heard me rant about how much I hate them), so when I saw the swanky portable bathrooms (hot shower included) that may have been a highlight for me.
Bars galore – and did I mention free drinks?
You get a wrist band upon entry, which includes an RFID tag. This is topped up, so can go up to the bar (of which there there many, so very little queueing), ask for whatever you want and it comes off of the budget on your tag.
I think each wristband type gets a different budget, but it was pretty generous. We’re not talking watery festival beer either – Goose IPA, Hoegaarden, Sierra Nevada, and an amazing cocktail bar with really entertaining staff that were more than happy to hand you mimosa’s at eight in the morning.
…and free food
The only thing you really had to queue for was food, which was about 30-40 minute wait, but the food was pretty good, and your ticket includes breakfast, lunch and dinner. Everyone shared tables so it was a great place to meet and talk to people.
All the activities
We took part in quite a few of these, all free! I was one of the few people who managed to make it to the 9am cross country run on the Saturday morning, which was a refreshing start to the day.
There was also trapeze lessons, roller disco, boating / swimming in the lake (if you don’t mind getting hypothermia), yoga, basket weaving… and so many more we didn’t make it to. There was also folk dancing we all joined in with after a lazy lunchtime which was just the pick me up we needed.
To my delight they announced a few days before that one of my favourite bands, Penguin Prison, would be playing so that made my day! We also had Florence Against the Machine, Crystal Fighters and Two Door Cinema Club. In between acts there was also the flying trapeze artists which were brilliant.
And last but not least – a great chance to network
There were freelancers, agencies and startups from all over the world who had travelled to Summercamp, and it was great to talk shop (or not) with them around the campfire, or at the dinner table.
Would highly recommend a visit to any digital folk out there looking to chill out / party for the weekend with like minded people.