Dear First-Time Doofers: Get Your Head Out Of The Festival Gutter

Warning: The word “doof” is mentioned a ridiculously high number of times in this article.

Dear First-Time Doofers,

I hear this is the year you’re ditching the pubs, clubs and inner-city one-day festival scene to get among the fairies, pixies, and other wild things.

Perhaps you’re planning on abandoning your “old self” and reconnecting with Terra Madre.

Or maybe you’re just sick of listening to old mate Greg, who religiously attends doofs, talk about how centred his life is, along with his plans for this year’s so called “doof stick”.

“What is a doof stick? And what the hell is a “doofer?”, I hear you ask.

Well, you’ve come to the right place if these are the questions you need answered.

Before you hit the dust, trees, and doof d-floor there are some things a first-time doofer should know.

For a doof is a special place with unspoken rules, and a rare vibe that is worth maintaining.

A doof is more than music.

While listening to impeccable tunes is definitely top of the agenda, a doof is a place where people gather to love each other, wear what they feel, free themselves from judgement, most likely enjoy some great art, and, above all, connect with humans the way we were created to before individualism became a thing.

One of the first things to note here is the vibe. It’s not corny, it’s for real. We’re not here for any ego stroking, competitive attitudes.

Nor are we here to get a good pic and get wasted enough to hook up with Peter or Stacey over there… (although we don’t blame ya for snapping a few pics of that banging doof outfit you’ve popped on).

The magic of a doof is that heart-warming, soul-cleansing human connection and self-development.

Here humans smile at each other. We hug each other.

We like to squat next to trees and talk about the universe and good and evil with each other.

So embrace your fellow doofers, sit down and have a chat. We’re all here to grow, learn, and dance our big hearts out.

We don’t look down on a little male-on-male bonding.

Say hi to the kiddies.

Doofs are family friendly events.

Remember that.

Don’t do anything you wouldn’t do in front of the kids, hunny. Or your little sister, or your cousin for that matter.

The rating is usually PG (during the day, at least).

elements festival 2018
Wholesome AF, y’all.

Hi, my name is psytrance.

Depending on the doof you attend, you’ll most likely hear a bit of what we like to call psytrance (or psychedelic trance, if you will).

This genre is unique to the doof scene, which actually began with psychedelic, Goa-style music a few decades ago.

Cast your eyes over to the d-floor and you’ll see fairies, pixies and rogue imps moving their bodies in ways you forgot humans could.

There’ll be feet stomping and body wiggling a-plenty, so don’t be too quick to judge the music. Have a go. Kick off your shoes, stomp your feet, and lose yourself.

Go on, have a dance. We’re too enthralled with the lights to stare.

Things get messy

No, not messy because Peter punched George. None of that please.

Messy because doofers like to get wild and… well… doof.

If it’s raining, we’ll dance in the mud. If it’s dry, you’ll be smothered in dust (remember to bring something to cover your mouth).

Don’t wear anything you can’t get a little dirty. Trust me.

earth frequency
Filthy and lovin’ it.

Explore the activities.

Don’t forget about all the extracurricular goodness you’ll find at your local doof.

Extra to most festivals, a doof will have an array of activities for you to participate in each day.

Attend workshops, do morning yoga, immerse yourself in some dance therapy, join in a sound healing session.

And, while it’s more than an activity, remember to pay your respects to our first peoples and attend opening ceremonies to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land (if the doof has an opening ceremony, that is).

Festival organisers use these important occasions to set the intention and thank those involved in making the doof happen. They aren’t meant to be “break time” to change your outfit.

Where else can two strangers simulate a date via a puppet workshop?

Get used to nudity. We’re all friends here.

I remember the first time a mate of mine hit up the dance floor at a doof, only to be immediately alarmed by the nudity around her.

At these events, you will see people in all beautiful shapes and sizes shaking their fun bits in the hot summer sunlight.

We don’t consider unclothed bodies “R-rated” if the intention of the nude one is simply to free themselves of social constraints by going “au natural” for a few hours.

Remember: No judgement.

We don’t need clothes.

Even when it’s not 35 degrees.


Open your mind. Let yourself go.

A doof is a chance to do the things you feel unable to conquer in everyday social settings.

Do that dance move you only do in your bedroom.

Wear that outfit you only wear at home (e.g. your birthday suit).

Hug a stranger.

Walk around barefoot.

Sit under a tree and do some sketching.

Tell someone what you’re thinking.

Feel the love.

And, as for doof sticks and doofers, you’ll find out when you get there.

Above all else, know this, first time doofer: You’re so welcome.

The doof will love to have you, if you respect the doof.

All my love,


See you there!

This article was written by Rosanne Maloney, a journo with a full-time heart for writing about social justice issues, and a part-time passion for having a good boogie. Find her at @rosannemmaloney.

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One Comment

  1. Do you have permission from the 2 women who have their chest exposed only covered in mud. If you don’t I suggest you remove the pictures until permission is granted.

    It is great that both these ladies feel free and safe to be able to expose their bodies but it is one thing to have your body exposed at a festival and another for it to be exposed online in an article that could potentially be seen and shared by thousands, without your knowledge let alone consent. What we choose to do at parties is up to ourselves but if these pictures have been used without the permission of these ladies you have totally vilotated their rights and need to remove them immediately.

    And why is it that in this article 2 pictures of almost naked women need to be used? Why could you not show 2 men hugging each other and sharing love or whole dancelfoor dancing sharing and enjoying togeher, or an opening ceremony and land blessing by traditional owners.

    This article was about exposing new comers to festivals and what to expect, and although well written explaining that nudity is accepted the choice of pictures does not reflect the scene in totality. Instead these pictures may well intice new patrons into believing its a sexualised scene. Dreamland magazine please be more aware of what you are putting out and the impact it may have on indivuals and the scene as a whole

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