Safety is a Priority at Hiawatha!

Our Festival Safety folks work tirelessly before and over the weekend to help everyone have a safe and enjoyable time.  

Our First Aid Station is located near the Main Stage and Children's Playground, this tent is staffed 24/7 with trained and licensed medical professionals, under the direction of Dr. Michael Traktman.  All minor medical situations should be directed to the First Aid Station.  On occasion, our physical may recommend additional medical care and contact 911.  The First Aid team works closely with our CARE and Security Teams.  

C.A.R.E. Team ( Check, Assess, Respond, Educate) - This is a dedicated group of mental health professionals and counselors with years of experience in helping folks with mental illness, helping with personal conflicts, illness or injury, lost children/parents, or other unforeseen emergencies. Under the direction of Coorindators, Nicole Lackey and Ashley Jenema, there are two CARE volunteers are on duty 24/7 and are usually seen walking around Festival grounds with blue vests on.  The CARE Team works closely with the Security Team and the First Aid volunteers.

Security Team - Our Security Team is our largest volunteer group of the Festival.  Our Security team is housed in the large tent near the Children's Playground and has volunteers in the tent and on the grounds 24/7.  Our Security team volunteers wear orange vests.  Duties include surveying the perimeter, checking for wristbands/camping tags/parking tags, monitors and reports illegal activities and in general keep everyone safe.  The Security Team works closely with the First Aid Tent and the CARE Team.

Local Law Enforcement - The Hiawatha Music Co-op collaborates with the City of Marquette Police Department to help us have a safe event.  You may see our City Police on the grounds in uniform or not in uniform, walking around, usually during the evenings or on occasion assisting our Security Team with a challenging situation. 

Emergency Evacuation - To stay tuned to severe weather alters, please download the App, "Remind" or sign up by sending a text to 81010 and typing in @hiawatha.  Festival Director and Board maintain regular and emergency contact with the local National Weather Service staff to stay informed of impending inclement weather.  


Bike Safety Training is Required for all of Hiawatha's Young Riders

Hiawatha Music Co-op and the Start the Cycle have joined together as of Festival 2019 to help make our Festival safe for everyone.  To that end, we have designed a Biker Safety Orientation (BSO) that we want all youth ages 14 and under to attend.  Our expectation is that our young bikers will learn to have fun and respect others while riding their bikes.  Participants will receive safety and etiquette information, a map of the grounds specifically for bikers, and a wristband upon completion of the course. All kids 14 and under must wear the BSO wristband while riding a bike. 

Who should attend?  Kids 14 and under who plan to ride their bike on festival grounds are required to attend. All others are welcome!

When are classes?  Classes are offered two times throughout the festival. Parents should plan to attend with their children.  There will be at least 2 sessions, one Friday later afternoon and one Saturday morning.   Kids 14 and under must attend class and receive a wristband before riding bike on festival grounds.  Youth 14 and under who are observed riding their bike without a wristband will be asked to walk their bike until contact with a responsible parent/adult can be made.  

Where are classes?  Classes will be held in the big field near Camping Area D, known as the old ball field. 

What are classes focused on? Classes will teach participants how to be a SAFE and RESPECTFUL rider inside the Festival grounds.


  • Helmets save lives! While helmets are not required at Hiawatha, they are strongly encouraged. Start the Cycle Coaches will assist with proper helmet fitting and placement if needed.  Please bring your helmet to the Festival and to the class!
  • Traffic– Cars are bigger than bikes! Bikers should alwaysride on the right side of the road, nevercut between traffic, always look to be sure the road is clear between turning or merging, and alwaysuse turn signals to show cars which way you are going.  Walkers alwayshave the right-of-way.  This means it’s the biker’s job to be considerate, give them space, and let them know when they are passing.
  • Communication– Verbal communication and hand signals help cars, other bikers, walkers, hoopers and dancers know what you are doing to avoid collision. Participants will learn signals for turning left and right, as well as biker specific language to alert others of things like passing, turning, slowing and stopping. 
  • The Grounds– It takes a lot of electricity to run a music festival! Watch for large electrical cords, especially near the stage, and neverrun them over.
  • Curfew– For the safety of everyone, bikers 14 and under will have a curfew of 8 pm. Please enjoy the Festival on foot, and we’ll see you on wheels in the morning!


  • Space – Please do not cut through other’s campsites on your bikes, unless you have been invited. We want everyone here to have fun, and need to respect each other’s space.
  • Bike racks and drop areas – Please consider parking your bike at a bike rack when you go places. Otherwise there will be a bike drop area (marked on the map) where you can lay your bike down, or you can leave it in your campsite.  Remember, if you leave your bike somewhere else, it could get trampled by a car or a heard of dancing elephants!
  • Off-limits areas – Bikes are NOT allowed in Food Concession area, Artist in the Round, on the Dance Tent dance floor, or in the Main State seating area. These areas are marked on the map.


The Start the Cycle group will host a short group ride outside of the Festival grounds after each class.  Come and join and see where else you can have fun on your bike. 



Updated 2022