1. The winter day the lineup is announced is basically a holiday for you.
2. In June, your road trip and hours of traffic before getting to the farm require more patience.
Try to stay calm and #RadiatePositivity.
3. And once you get in, the fate of your weekend is completely in the hands of whoever assigns you a campsite.
The difference between a 15- and 60-minute walk from your bed to Centeroo is kind of a big deal. When they say “5th largest city in Tennessee,” they’re not kidding.
4. An E-Z Up can actually save your life.
Seriously, don’t even try and camp without one.
5. And tapestries are camp essentials — not (only) because they look cool, but because they keep the sun out.
6. Tevas and Chacos are the best way to keep your feet happy, and the easiest shoes to wash mud off of.
The tanlines you’ll take home with you are an added bonus.
7. Shade under a tree is a crucial place to recharge.
Don’t spend all day in the sun. You won’t make it. Cool spots for naps also include the air-conditioned Cinema and Comedy tents.
Because you definitely can’t sleep past 7 a.m. in your tent. It’s way too hot.
8. Beer and heat don’t mix in large volumes. Sometimes, you’ve just got to wait in line for cold, filtered water. But most of the time, walking up to the refill station for warm well water will do.
The thirst is real, but there are levels.
9. The ground, in the middle of a crowd, is weirdly an accepted place to pass out.
But not a safe one. Try a hammock instead.
11. …people have an open mind about pretty much everything…
13. It’s impossible to see everyone you planned on seeing.
The farm is just too big. But you’ll probably end up discovering something you never expected on one of your trips from end to end.
14. And sometimes, you just can’t leave a show.
Not only because the music is so entrancingly good, but because you’re too close to the stage and the people around you are just not really trying to move.
15. Finding out where your friends are may not be hard, but it will always make you sound ridiculous, because the stage names are silly.
“What Stage” are they at? “This Tent” or “That Tent” or “The Other Tent”?
16. Your phone has NO service, but that’s no reason to “TWEAK OUT.”
17. Because you’re on a FARM and you’re temporarily “FREE” from the internet, and whatever’s on your phone can WAIT.
18. 3 a.m. pizza is the most essential meal of your day. Maybe barbecue, if you’re feeling wild.
20. But think “Happy Bonnaroo” is the sweetest salutation of all.
“Bonnaroo” can also stand in for pretty much any positive word.
22. You save your most special outfit for Saturday night.
23. And relax on Sunday in whatever pair of boxers or bathing suit still smells OK.
24. At that point, it’s basically impossible to tell whether you’re tan or just dirty.
25. And you’re comfortable with the fact that showering in the mushroom fountain is better than not showering at all.
Don’t worry, you’ll feel dirty again as soon as you walk out.
26. The Silent Disco gets bigger and bigger every year.
Remember when it was in that little tent?
27. And the food options get fancier and fancier.
In 2014 there was Hamageddon, a 4,000-pound steel pig sculpture that spat fire alongside Baconland, an area where “bacon flights” were served. Both of those were conveniently located near the Broo’ers Festival, a tent showcasing microbreweries from around the country.
28. Basically, Bonnaroo is way less grungy than it used to be. It’s organized, clean, and full of mainstream bands.
29. But people are still super nice.
30. And by the time you’ve got to head home, you realized you’ve got more strength than you ever thought possible.
What even IS sleep?