Bonnaroo Celebrates 15 Years of Magic with Pearl Jam, Dead & Company and LCD Soundsystem
Bonnaroo Music + Arts Festival has been shaking asses since 2002. Located on a 700-acre farm in Manchester, TN, Bonnaroo boasts a four-day weekend of mayhem, music, art, food and libations. Known for their array of headliners over the years, 2016 will be no different with rock gods Pearl Jam, the reunion of electronic legends LCD Soundsystem and Dead & Company, featuring the surviving members of The Grateful Dead (guitarist Bob Weir, drummers Bill Kreutzmann and Mickey Hart) with the inclusion of pop-icon John Mayer filling in for the late Jerry Garcia. Other acts include J. Cole, Ellie Goulding, Death Cab for Cutie, Band of Horses, Ween, Tame Impala, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Chris Stapleton, Father John Misty, Leon Bridges and Miguel just to name a few.
Aside from a lineup for the ages, Bonnaroo provides enough camping options to make your head spin. This way, making it home after a long day of dancing, drinking, and whatever else struck your fancy, is just minutes away. Of course, there’s general admission camping for the minimalist among us but if you’re looking for a glamping-style approach, try Le Bon Tents for pre-pitched, hassle-free accommodations. Interested in the VIP glamping experience? Bonnaroo offers luxury tents featuring a bed, A/C and portable coolers. Take it a step further with their all new Cabanas for the ultimate luxurious festival camping you deserve. Also offered on site are, of course, RV camping grounds. If schlepping your own RV across the country doesn’t sound too appealing don’t worry because Bonnaroo has pre-parked RVs that you can rent like hotel rooms.
The Roo has become known as one of the first music festivals to include comedy as a major part of their lineup. Past comedians include Mike Birbiglia, David Cross, Aziz Ansari, Nick Kroll and Flight of the Conchords duo. This year, without fail, they’ve succeeded once again in creating a world-class comedy tent featuring the star of Comedy Central’s depraved pot-infused comedy show Workaholics, Adam Devine. The hilarious mind behind comedy films “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” “Superbad,” “Anchorman” and “Knocked Up,” Judd Apatow will also be there alongside his “friends,” which could be any number of the riotous comedians he’s worked with over the years.
In 2016, Bonnaroo celebrates 15 magical years with an epic lineup, but they’ve also began the process of cementing the farm upon, which the festival takes place every year, with its own water lines. What’s this mean for festival goers? Flushable toilets, hundreds of showers and additional water filling stations, all of which are perfect for those humid Tennessee summers. The inclusion of this intricate water system is meant to support the city that is Bonnaroo for the four days in which it exists.
The city on the farm, as it were, consists of about every facility one would need while partying under the sun. There’s the obligatory medical, lost and found, general store, shopping and info booths. The Roo comes replete with a Broo’ers Festival showcasing 25 breweries from around the world. Attendees can even register for Broo’ers University program, which provides classes and discussions on the “awesomeness of beer.” Contrary to what you may expect from a pop-up city in the middle of a farm, Bonnaroo does not skimp on authenticity. The Broo’ers Festival will feature real wooden bars, haystacks, whiskey barrels and an Oktoberfest-style outdoor patio facing one of the stages.
Food also plays a big part in this festival. Among the plethora of food trucks that will inevitably show up, you’ll also find Planet Roo Cafe, a 100% waste-free food joint run by the festival itself where healthy, organic and local foods prevail. It’s an oasis of sustainability and global consciousness. Learn about the effects of global warming and how you can play a part in saving the planet, take a class on how to make everyday sustainable choices, join a yoga session with fellow Bonnaroovians or simply enjoy a healthy meal. Planet Roo also invites local and national non-profits where festival goers can learn about say, protecting Tennessee riverways, or even register to vote.
On the opposite end of that spectrum, pork lovers will find an oasis that’s only imaginable in their wildest dreams. Hamageddon and BaconLand are onsite havens providing some of the best pork-related selections from around the country.
Bonnaroo is not only the place for fighting to save the world, enjoying the best music around and laughing your pants off but also for experiencing art in more forms than a museum curator could ever imagine. Picture an “art car” that drives around the festival grounds dropping bass submerged in neon lights, or perhaps you’re in the mood for Christmas in June? Snake and Jake’s Christmas Club Barn provides an X-mas themed dance party in the spirit of the New Orleans dive bar of the same name. Saturday night they host a “robe rage” that insists guests don their favorite robe be it wizard, boxing, bath or kimono! As you walk around the grounds, keep your eyes peeled for the graffiti wall and plenty of random structures, pieces and installations throughout. Also, don’t forget to cool off in the iconic Bonnaroo Fountain located in the middle of Centeroo, the festival’s center.
Bonnaroo has somehow managed to create an utter debaucherous atmosphere while still maintaining a sophisticated level of consciousness and doing good for others. It’s a tightrope walk that only a festival with several years of experience could pull off. Festival goers have deemed the Roo a place of freedom, deep connection, eternal happiness and an actual Neverland. Trust us when we say, if you’re going to choose only one festival to attend this year, Bonnaroo is a damn good choice.