Rave heart hands crowd overhead

Have you ever heard the expression “Keep your ducks in a row?” It means to be well prepared for managing the task at hand. When you hear this famous expression, the thought of a mother duck swimming around a pond, ducklings in tow, may spring to mind.

And if you’ve ever played the role of “rave mom” or “rave dad” for your group of friends during an event, you might understand how it feels to have all those little ducklings break formations all at once. It can be stressful and chaotic. Terrifying, even. But it can be much easier to manage for the well-prepared — not if, but when your ducklings step out of line.

Fear not! Party Guru has your back. With the information provided here, you can keep your little party ducklings in a row and still have fun doing it. Here is everything you’ll need to learn to be a good rave mom or dad.

What is a Rave Mom or Dad?

Most people in the scene have heard this popular term before. Others, perhaps new to raving, haven’t. There’s a good chance that at least one person in every group of friends tends to take care of everybody during a fun night out. They ensure the group sticks together and has whatever they need to stay safe and have fun. That person is your rave mom/dad, and it’s a significant role to play. So, what does it take to play the part? Well…

Know Your Group Dynamic

Does one of your friends like to wander off during an event? Does another always have to go to the restroom as soon as your group finds their spot for the evening? Does somebody have a bad habit of losing their stuff whenever they have a fun night out?

If anybody pops into your mind while reading those questions, then congratulations! That means you understand your group dynamic, and this alone will help you be more prepared when it’s time for you to take care of them all. Stay ahead of the problems, and you can prevent them from happening altogether.

Have a Game Plan

Before you leave, you should already have a general idea of how the night will go. This includes things like the venue layout; artist lineup; which friends want to see which artists; and the locations of the bathroom, food, and merchandise lines.

It would be best to talk to everybody in the group to find out what is most important to them in having a good night. Most of these things can be knocked out right when you arrive. Ensure everybody agrees on a meet-up spot to keep your group from being separated all night should certain friends decide to go to different stages. A solid game plan can make the difference between controlled chaos and just plain chaos.

Be Supportive, not Controlling

Nothing kills a vibe like being a control freak. You are not there to boss anybody around. Instead, your job as a rave parent is to support anybody who needs it.

A friend sets their bag down to dance? Keep that bag safe. A friend walks into the crowd to jump into a mosh pit? Hold up a totem or some other object that stands out so they can easily find their way back to the group. Does somebody look anxious or nervous? Distract them by talking or hand them something fun to play with, like a flow toy or light diffraction glasses.

Small gestures like these can often turn a frustrating experience into a good one. After all, the whole point of going out is to have fun, and a good rave parent can make sure everybody has the chance to do that.

Pack a Venue-Approved Bag With EVERYTHING

Ah yes. The magical bag of tricks. Any experienced rave parent will tell you how important it is to have a bag packed to the brim with everything a person might need during an event. They might even say it’s crucial to being a good rave parent. After all, your job is to ensure everyone in the group has what they need for the evening — even if they didn’t think to bring it at the time.

A good rule for a great rave bag is, “If somebody has ever asked you for it during an event, put it in the bag.” When you hand them something they need most, the look on somebody’s face is priceless. 

Here’s a short list of things that should be in every good rave parent’s bag.

  • Water, snacks, candy, gum, etc.
  • Portable phone charger with every cable you might need.
  • A fan to cool off anybody feeling too hot.
  • A tiny can of spray-on deodorant (trust me).
  • Venue-approved toys like glow sticks, light diffraction glasses, and flow toys. Anything that lights up looks fantastic and feels good.
  • Peace offerings are small items such as toys or candy bracelets that you can give to people in the crowd when you stand next to them on a crowded dance floor. Bring some of those and make peace with your new neighbors while your friends get weird.

Happy Raving!

After reading this, you should have everything you need to be prepared while becoming a rave mom or rave dad. While it may not be necessary for your group to have a rave parent, it is a good idea.

Rave moms and rave dads play a pivotal role in the scene, not just for their immediate party family but also for the strangers around them. We must look out for each other during live events to stay safe, happy, and have a good time.

Shout out to all the selfless people taking on this essential task. Party Guru Salutes you, kind souls.

Photo by Alfonso Scarpa

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