Bonnaroo main stage

Bonnaroo Superlatives: The Best Acts of 2015

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It’s been a whole week since my hometown music festival ended, and I’m still processing all that I saw and did and ate and drank. Each Bonnaroo looks the same, but feels so different. In past years, I’ve only focused on the music. Last year, I only focused on the food. This year, I had some very special visitors experiencing the ‘Roo for the first time, so we experienced a little bit of everything.

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Best bite: Roti Rolls. Several of my foodie friends swore by this Charleston-based food truck, and I knew they wouldn’t lead me astray. It was every bit as awesome as they said. Good thing I’m going to Charleston in a month…

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Best sip: the shake at gastroPod. I ate gastroPod last year for the Pulp Fiction-themed menu and again this year—twice! I’m not much for vanilla anything usually, because I find it simply too boring, but damn, gastroPod’s malted vanilla shake defies all logic.

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Best community experience: BonnaROOTS dinner. SVV and I were lucky to be visitors of Oxfam America and Eat for Equity at their communal dinner that took place under the stars each night at dusk. Not only did we get to eat delicious, sustainable cuisine, but our friend Emilie’s folk band from Minnesota happened to be the dinner entertainment! What are the odds?

Oxfam dinner at Bonnaroo
Oxfam dinner at Bonnaroo
Oxfam dinner at Bonnaroo

Best new-to-me experience: yoga classes. Alex and I did both a vinyasa and an acro class on the same morning, and while it was boiling hot at the height of the day under the beating sun, it was also a whole heck of a lot of fun. (A whole new meaning to hot yoga, right?) Next year, I will definitely incorporate more of the fitness options into my daily ‘Rootine (get it? heh).

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Best indie concert: Brandi Carlile. Another indie artist I love, Brandi totally rocked one of the big stages on the final night. (Side note: Who’s going to her Ryman show in October?)

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Best small show: Kacey Musgraves. Our June cover girl can do no wrong, y’all. She’s even more a delight on stage than she is on the radio (or Instagram for that matter).

Best big stage set: Mumford & Sons. Those guys just know how to put on a show, even if their music lures me to sleep at times. I know the rabid Mumford fans were doubly happy that they showed this year after one of the band member’s had to get emergency brain surgery when they were scheduled to play two years back.

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Biggest letdown: Billy Joel. I’m not saying he was awful, but like Lionel Richie in 2014, I nearly fell asleep when he took the stage. Florence + the Machine wasn’t much better, much to my dismay. It seemed all the shows I really loved this year were in the tents and smaller stages.

Best use of $6: Riding the Ferris wheel. You can’t possibly grasp the scope of the Farm until you see it from above.

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Trippiest scene: the Silent Disco. No surprise, but Alex and the NVR Guys were all over that one!

Best reason to skip the line at Amish Baking Co.: Dave’s Mini Donuts. Don’t want to wait for 100 people to go ahead of you in the line at the Amish? You don’t have to. I’d wager to say I liked Dave’s even more than the fan favorite, Amish Baking Co., as evidenced by the fact that Alex and I went back two straight late nights for the Yabba Dabba Fruity Pebbles minis. (Now you see why we did yoga twice in one day!)

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Funniest name: Poutine Your Mouth. While I didn’t order the Canadian-style fries, I stole a few from a random girl whose food I asked to photograph (what? like you wouldn’t have done the same!) and while I’m not a fry person, it was surprisingly divine.

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Biggest surprise: Neapolitan pizza. I’m not usually one to order pizza at a festival with more than 100 options, but I ate it not once but twice, first at oldie but goodie Spicy Pie, then at Rolling Oven. Their mobile pizzeria in the Food Truck Oasis was housed in a twenty-foot shipping container that has been redesigned into a kitchen with a glass wall and wood-fired oven for Chrissakes. I couldn’t not try it! (And it. was. delicious.)

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Worst thing I ate: nothing, really! I’d say I made pretty wise food choices with my 17 meals a day—though I wasn’t wild about the fried pies and I was a bit disappointed by the size of the Baconland grilled cheese, but it was tasty nonetheless. And let’s be honest, you go to Baconland for the bacon flights anyway, am I right?

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Best beer: I can’t say that I spent much time at Broo’ers Fest, but I’m always a fan of my hometown brewery, Ole Shed Brewing Company.

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

Best use of costumes: Why, Alex’s romper collection, of course! Girlfriend seems to have a Mary Poppins bag full of fruit-themed rompers, and I want them all. While we’re at it, Alex also gets the superlative for best dressed at Bonnaroo, because her outfits were on point at all times.

The Best of Bonnaroo 2015

What were your favorite parts of Bonnaroo 2015? On the flipside, what could you have done without?

COMMENTS
  • June 20, 2015

    I just love your melon play suit!

    • June 22, 2015

      I wanted Alex’s romper so badly! Alas, she’s about six inches too short (and 20 pounds too light but that’s another story) 😉

  • June 20, 2015

    Bonnaroo is really very beautiful place, anyone would like it.

  • June 21, 2015

    Looks like fun, reminds me of our local county fair here in Hawaii – good fun!

    • June 22, 2015

      Oooh I think I’d love your county fair in that case!

  • June 22, 2015
    Sian

    So bummed to hear that Florence and the Machine was a disappointment. I’ve had the new album on repeat since it released!

    • June 22, 2015

      Don’t get me wrong, she wasn’t bad. She just wasn’t lively and jumping all over the place like we’d seen evidence of from other concerts =( It was just a bit too mellow for being the main stage on the final night.

  • June 23, 2015

    There’s such a thing as someone who’s NOT a fries person?? Ha 😉 Definitely looked like a blast, I really hope to make it to Bonnaroo one year!

    • June 25, 2015

      Haha! I should clarify: I am a certified sweet potato fry addict, but not really a salty person, so traditional fries just aren’t my jam 😉

  • June 25, 2015

    Bonnaroo seems to be a wonderful place. I definitely like everything about it, and although i did not know about Munford $ Sons, i salute them after checking out their Youtube Channel! Thank you for sharing all those acts though! They are superb.

  • June 27, 2015

    I could possibly live on 17 meals per day …. 😀 Looks like a blast!

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