This past weekend my family and I travelled to Manchester, Tennessee the home of the Bonaroo Music Festival. I’ll be honest I hadn’t been too fired up about this festival because I’m not a camper at all. My husband who is a big music fan has always wanted to go but knew if he wanted to have his family with him he would have to find a way for us to go without having to sleep outside and take communal showers.
Luckily for him (and for us) he found the perfect way to go. Bonaroo offers day shuttle passes from Nashville. We left Nashville at 11 that morning arriving in Manchester around noon just in time for us to eat lunch and catch a new band, Joe Hertler and the Rainbow Seekers. We left at 12:30 that night after hearing some great music and even some new acts that I’ve already downloaded. So because I was a newbie at the whole music festival scene, I had done some homework on what to bring which I’m passing along to y’all.
- Go VIP. I know that sounds extravagant but when it’s 99 degrees outside to have several places throughout the festival that had air conditioning was a life saver. Unless you are in your twenties go VIP the extra money was worth every penny.
- Bring ear plugs. As a VIP you get up close access to some amazing artists and while Grace Potter has some incredible energy if I ask you to repeat yourself this week it’s just because my hearing took a beating
- Wear something you don’t care about if it doesn’t make it home. When you are outside in that heat for over 12 hours you are not going to be so fresh. . My t-shirt is from Target and my shorts are from Loft. I think after a couple of times in the washing machine it will be ok but if it wasn’t I wasn’t going to be heart broken
- Bring a blanket or beach towel. Sometimes you just wanted to find a spot to plop down and luckily I just threw down a beach towel and we were good to go. Check this one out from Shopbop.
- Bring a water bottle. The word of the day was hydrate. There are plenty of refilling stations and with my Swell bottle my water stayed cold all day long.
- Bring snacks. I loaded up my back pack with granola bars and peanut butter crackers. When it’s that hot I’m all about the small meals but a bar in between meals helped when I felt like I was wilting. Also bring a pack of handy wipes. See above about that not so fresh feeling.
- A small battery powered fan, even better if it sprays water too. Have I said how hot it was?
- Hear at least one group or musician you weren’t familiar with. For me it was Joe Hertler and the Rainbow Seekers; soulful with a twist. I can see their music being played after a long day at work with a glass of wine just unwinding. We also listened to Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, a R & B sound. They debuted on Jimmy Fallon last year and they haven’t looked back.
- Finally don’t be a bonehead. Bonaroo has The Code. Staff are simply doing their job by not allowing you to bring in contraband to the festival as well as walking around making sure everyone stays safe. Be grateful for their presence. Keep the Bonaroo spirit and everybody will have a great time!
Chris Stapleton rocks. I first heard him a few years ago when he opened for Little Big Town. He is still great. One thing I loved was after his set he went and gave the Bonnagrannies a big hug. If you haven’t seen their story, check it out here. They are my hero!
A fan favorite of the men, she brings it. You can see why the men like her. What energy she has.