BY: CAITLYN JENKINS
I feel like no amount of words could bring justice to just how astounding Bonnaroo really is, but how could I not write about such a cool experience?
This was my first time attending the popular festival which is located in Manchester, TN on a giant farm. A lot of attendees opt for the camping options that Bonnaroo offers, which is actually a really good idea considering how people come from all over for this festival.
I did the car camping. They let you park your car and give you a good amount of space for a tent and other things. We had enough room to put two pop-up 10×10 tents next to the truck and put our actual tent underneath. The camping is one of the things that made Bonnaroo so fun for me, and I’m sure other people agree. It’s a cool experience to be camping out on a farm, making friends with your neighbors, and being walking distance to an abundance of good music.
Inside “Centeroo” are the stages, the huge fountain, bathrooms with running water, a ferris wheel, and so much more. For someone who has only been to music festivals in the parks of Atlanta, it was overwhelming at first being in such a big space. We had to do a walk through so we could figure out where everything was. (They do have maps but we couldn’t find one).
The lineup this year was incredible. Artists I saw included Portugal. The Man, Cage the Elephant, Chance the Rapper, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Lorde, Travis Scott, the Front Bottoms, and plenty more. They also had U2 and the Weeknd, who were headliners alongside Chance.
The great thing about Bonnaroo is that it never stops.. on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night they have late night shows that can last up until 6 am.
I could go into the details of how every show I saw made me feel, how good the music was, and the way the artists performed, but I feel like that’s overdoing it. Bottom line, the music was awesome. (Cage the Elephant was probably my favorite though, but I’m a little biased on that)
What I want to write more about is the vibe of the festival. I have heard things about Bonnaroo, seen pictures, watched videos, etc., but I never could’ve imagined how it is to actually be there.
It’s so happy. I know that seems like a simple way to put it, but it really is. It’s like a giant party you can go to and it’s guaranteed that everyone there will be cool. It feels like the place you can go and be yourself, with no judgments from anybody. People are there to have a good time and listen to music.
With everything going on in the world right now, it’s so amazing how a festival can make you forget about it for a second and feel peace and harmony. At Bonnaroo, no one is any less equal than another. Music is such a beautiful thing and Bonnaroo is doing such a beautiful thing with it. It brings people together from all over. There are different sexualities, genders, races, religions, shapes, sizes, etc. all together sharing one common thing: the love of music. That is why it’s such a special experience to me.
Of course, a lot of people would say you feel the same way at other festivals. I have definitely felt the sense of unity and freedom that other festivals offer, but this is different. I can’t explain how, but you should go, at least once in your life, and experience it for yourself, because that is the only way you’ll ever truly know how great it is.
Pictures below all taken by @RoyceAultman.