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Updated on March 1, 2020

Every year, the little town of Manchester, Tennessee hosts an enormous music and arts event that spans four days, 700 acres, and is the host to dozens of bands, artisans, and nearly 80,000 visitors. There is a lot to do, with free activities from the event’s sponsors, vendors, and music at several stages, a comedy stage, and of course, the huge throngs of people. Lasting four whole days, Bonnaroo is the single largest music festival in Tennessee.

What? That?

A sense of levity and humor hangs over the event; it’s venues and locations named in a most comical manner, with even the event’s name taken from the Cajun word meaning “a really good time.”

The stages are called What and Which, respectively, and the central gathering area has three music tents called This, That and The Other. Centeroo, where these tents are all pitched, is a 24-hour area – so there is always something to hear, see, buy or do!


Bonnaroo held it’s first festival in June of 2002. Over 70,000 tickets were sold for the event, with music from bands of all shapes and sizes. Widespread Panic was the big name in mainstream music at the 2002 Bonnaroo, and played along with dozens of other bands.

Since the first Bonnaroo, the event has continued to grow, focusing on music and sharing, entertainment and fellowship. The event never fails to sell out, and the response from the music world is overwhelming as each festival is announced. Bigger and bigger names in the music industry clamor for the opportunity to play here, and find their sets scheduled right alongside their companions on the indie side of the map.

Charity and Community

Bonnaroo’s website states that their focus is on giving back to the community, and made considerable contributions to the following organizations in 2007 alone:

  • Coffee County & Manchester Police Department
  • Common Ground Relief
  • Doctors Without Borders
  • Rock the Earth
  • Head Count
  • Music Cares

Overall, Bonnaroo has contributed millions of dollars to the local economy, as well as their significant financial donations. In recent years the organizers have also brought a focus of green living and recycling into the event. By allowing visitors to set up tents, and encouraging ride-sharing and communal camps, Bonnaroo attracts visitors and impresses upon each of them the importance of sharing for the preservation of the earth in every way possible.

Bonnaroo Music and Line-up

Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival has made a name for itself with hip hop, jazz, country, reggae, indie and classic rock, alternative and electronic music - and more - and over the years it has been organized has featured an incredible list of acts, including:

  • Eminem
  • U2
  • Phish
  • Nine Inch Nails
  • Radiohead
  • Kanye West
  • Willie Nelson
  • Metallica
  • The Police
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Beastie Boys
  • ZZ top

and so very many more.

Where to get more Info

Bonnaroo Information

You can find out more information about things like the current lineup, ticket purchasing, the FAQ and what you’re allowed to bring by visiting the main website: Bonnaroo. You can also join the ‘official’ unofficial discussion forum at Inforoo.

Celebrate a lifetime of music, harmony amongst your fellow man, and pick up some awesome swag at Bonnaroo!


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