Photo: Ed Steele (

Photo: Ed Steele (

Prepare for the Gathering of the Juggalos Like a Boss

The Gathering of the Juggalos may be a whole five months away, but now is the time to start preparing, ninja! The Gathering is one hell of a mecca and an event you want to be prepared for, if you want to gather like a boss. Plus, daily or weekly prep for the Gathering gives you a chance to daydream of the best time you’ll have this year and maybe of Gatherings in the past, if you’ve been. There is no harm in being prepared, Juggalos.

Purchasing your ticket(s), passes, and all the camping gear you need is quite easy and less financially taxing if you buy something once a week or paycheck. Buy your ticket(s) one week, your tent the next, chairs the next, and so on until you have purchased everything on your necessities list for the Gathering. It’s that easy, ninja. I did this last year and plan on doing it again. It was pretty dope to end up with everything we needed by the time we were ready to go to the greatest place on Earth, that is if you’re a Juggalo.

The Gathering isn’t just about camping. You got something to promote (especially music)? Start buying promotional materials and merch now to build up your stock for the Gathering. You can build a much larger collection of materials to hand out if you start collecting piece by piece now. Not to mention, if anything arrives messed up in your promotional materials you can get that shit fixed before the big event. Plus, the bigger your stock the more you can promote.

gathering of the juggalos

Speaking of hustling at the Gathering. Many Juggalos use the Gathering to make cash or at least comp some of their duckets back for this most glorious of Juggalo vacations. Now is the time to start making/ordering shit. When you are talking about crafting something to sell at the Gathering you need time to do it. Waiting until the last minute will limit the amount you can get done. Plus, hasty work produces shitty results. Many people have made a few bones hustling at the Gathering. If you aren’t crafty you can still sell shirts, stickers, and a myriad of other ordered merchandise. There have been Juggalos selling all kinds of unique shit from Waffle House shirts and “Got Neden?” stickers to homemade resin charms and dread falls.

Juggalos like to dress up for the Gathering in unique and creative costumes and outfits. Gatherings past have had costume contests because of the interest to cosplay Gathering style. To make a truly unique costume, now is the time to start putting it together. Not only do you need to put the costume together, but you need to try that shit on and try it out before you get to the Gathering. Again rushing this at the last moment will leave you with making compromises of what you really want in order to get it done in time. Think about the guy at the Halloween party who just came up with their costume two days before. It is usually the worst, most sloppy looking one. You ain’t winning no contest with that!

Photo: Ed Steele (

Photo: Ed Steele (

Speaking of contests, another staple contest for the Gathering is the tattoo contest. Now is the time to get that tattoo you want to have for the Gathering done. Keep in mind that even though you can go shower at the Gathering that it is a dirty camping experience and showing up with a tattoo that is not fully healed can spell disaster. In other words you run the risk of infection. Yes! There are tattoo shops posted up in trailers at the Gathering. Though I wouldn’t get one at the Gathering. Sorry tattoo artist, no infections for this ninja! I would advise if you want to get a tattoo at the Gathering to do it the last day after you have had a shower. I may be cautious with tattoos, but you don’t want a badly infected tattoo. I know how bad they can get. Which is another reason to get your tattoos done way before the Gathering. You never know how you will react. I have had tattoos heal in a couple weeks and some take over a month. It all depends on your immune system, where it is on your body, how fast you heal, and how you take care of it. Being outside sweating and getting dirty are not the best conditions for a fresh open skin wound. If you get it done in the next couple months you’ll be looking fly for the Gathering without an open wound.

hatchetman tattoo

Another way to prepare for the upcoming contest and events at the Gathering is to practice, practice, practice. You got to be on your A-game, Ninja! Practice make perfect after all. If you want to show off on stage at one of the various contests you need to get to rehearsing. With events like rap battles, the Gong Show, Miss Juggalette, and others you have every opportunity to shine. If you want to rise above the competition, then now is the time to start practicing, if you haven’t already. The age old trick of performing in front of a mirror works wonders. I mean can Tech N9ne and countless dancers and public speakers be wrong in this? Hell nah, ninja, I practiced my talent for the Miss Juggalette Pageant months before the Gathering last year and you can bet I am working on it again this year. Now is the time to start putting your act together and practice, practice, practice.

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The Gathering is a sacred time no one likes to waste. You want to catch as many events and shows as you can and have a good time. But, if your body is not in very good condition you’re going down quick. You’ll be pissed to no end when you wake up and find you missed Dark Lotus or the bomb-est party of the year cause your ass dropped out too soon. I have seen it happen, Ninjas! Everyone’s Gathering it up and you’re in the tent asleep. What a shame! So, don’t let this shit happen to you.

Make sure to eat healthy and get exercise. As soon as the weather was nice enough my ass started walking. I walked everyday for three months or so. During my walks, I would think about the Gathering. It was an incentive really. I would be sweating my ass off going, “Ya know it’s hot, but this will only acclimate me to the hot ass weather of the Gathering.” You do a lot of walking at the gathering, if you want to do as much as you can you need to start training now. You won’t be eating the best either so eat well now also. I am not saying start a whole new diet, but include healthy choices that make your mouth water. The better health you are in at the beginning of the Gathering the harder you can gather.

It’s still a long wait for the Gathering, but you can start prepping now. Once you start writing lists and gathering shit together you’ll see the Gathering entails a lot of planning and preparation. Don’t wait until July to get your shit together. Besides, if you are daydreaming about the Gathering of the Juggalos anyway, why not get ready for that mutherfackle right now? You’ll be glad you did.

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