Bonnaroo 2011. If you don't go, you'll never know. [Music Festivals]

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The Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival is a four-day, multi-stage camping festival held on a beautiful 700-acre farm in Manchester, Tennessee every June. This year From June 9th-12th, Bonnaroo brings together some of the best performers in rock and roll, along with dozens of artists in complementary styles such as jazz, Americana, hip-hop, electronica, and just about any contemporary music you can think of. In addition to dozens of epic performances, the festival's 100-acre entertainment village buzzes around the clock with attractions and activities including a classic arcade, on-site cinema, silent disco, comedy club, theater performers, a beer festival, and a music technology village. For its peaceful vibe, near-flawless logistics, and unrivaled entertainment options, Rolling Stone magazine named this revolutionary entertainment experience one of the 50 moments that changed the history of rock and roll.  This year include artists from Eminem to Dr. John, entertainment from Lewis Black to the Muppets, and 24-hours of fun food and frolicking including our own local favs: My Morning Jacket.

 Since its inception in 2002, Bonnaroo has demonstrated a strong commitment to supporting numerous local, regional and national non-profits, with a special focus on the Coffee County community where the festival is based.  Bonnaroo has generated and distributed over $3,000,000, mostly in direct contributions to a variety of initiatives and causes, in Coffee County and all over the country.  

Through a combination of programs – including ticket add-ons for charity and for the Coffee County general fund, the annual on-site Silent Auction, numerous other on site programs, and volunteer opportunities for local organizations – the Bonnaroo Music Festival has been a model in developing innovative ways to engage both fans and artists to support a variety of worthy and necessary causes in their community.  Health and social services, educational programs, and a variety of community projects such as the Coffee County Recreation Center, the Skateboard Park, and the Manchester Performing Arts Center have all benefited from Bonnaroo contributions. Bonnaroo’s charitable efforts also extend beyond Middle Tennessee.  The festival has also supported national non-profit organizations, including Doctors Without Borders, Head Count, Music Cares, Conscious Alliance, Habitat for Humanity, Boys and Girls Club of America, Rock the Earth, the American Red Cross, the Sierra Club and many others.  Additionally, Bonnaroo has also provided aid to some of the country's and world's most tragic disasters such as the Haitian Earthquake Relief, Nashville Floods and Gulf of Mexico oil spill.  

Unfortunately, general admission tickets are sold out (although some avail on Craigslist), but if you truly want to witness a modern-day Woodstock, are willing to camp, like music, dirt, good people, and a great time, Bonnaroo is just across our southern border and is still at your grasp.  If you can't go, I'll keep you posted.

(Photo courtesy of Bonnaroo.com)

About Kit Helton
Average single guy who has been able to lead an above average life. Originally from New Orleans and arrived in Louisville after 10 years via Chicago in 2005. Currently residing near Churchill Downs with my dog, Dixie. Owner of a catering company for over a decade and published cookbook author, I am lucky to return to the Food & Dining as well as Arts beats for Louisville.com.
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