×

Original Woodstock Site Restricted on Anniversary Weekend

The site of the original Woodstock festival, which is now Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, was deemed too small for the ill-fated 50th anniversary festival, which went down in flames last month after many weeks of confusion and many millions of dollars spent.

But now, with original Woodstock veterans Santana and John Fogerty as well as Ringo Starr scheduled to perform at the venue this on this coming weekend — Aug. 16-19, the exact dates of the 1969 festival — it’s the closest one can realistically get to an anniversary. Yet the local authorities, still mindful of the epic traffic jams that surrounded the original event, are hoping people will get the vibes some other weekend.

Only ticketholders will be allowed onto the Bethel Woods grounds Thursday through Sunday, and they must present a travel pass that was issued with the tickets — and there will be a very un-Woodstock-like element: checkpoints.

State troopers will be posted on the roads leading to the venue, and the town is prohibiting vehicles on or near the venue from parking on roadways or shoulders, according to the Poughkeepsie Journal. Cars found parking will be towed.

“We’re trying to encourage people that are not interested in the concert-side of things, and just want to come and sort of breathe the air and feel the vibes … to come on other weekends,” Bethel Woods CEO Darlene Fedun told the Associated Press.

Regardless, local officials expect up to 100,000 visitors from Thursday through Sunday.

The site, which is still surrounded by rolling countryside and farmland — although a road on it has been renamed“Yasgur Road, after Max Yasgur, the owner of the original grounds, has been a tourist attraction for many years: Stores and open-air markets along Route 17B are filled with tie-dyed and psychedelic items, although the Bethel Woods venue and nearby museum and surrounding monuments are as clean as most historic areas.

“When they first built it, I had mixed feelings about it,” Bill Bokesz, 66, a regular visitor, told the AP last week. “But there’s not condos here. It’s still here. They preserved the field — they did a really good job.”

The weekend’s festivities will kick off on Thursday, when original Woodstock performer Arlo Guthrie (of “Alice’s Restaurant” fame) will perform before an outdoor screening of the legendary 1970 Woodstock documentary on the festival field.

However, access will be tightly limited: There will be a free shuttle bus for those not allowed to bring cars to the monument, but visits will be limited to 30 minutes, “In order to give everyone a chance to make this pilgrimage,” an informational flyer reads.

“This time,” Town of Bethel supervisor Dan Sturm told reporters this week, “we’re going to get it right.”

 

 

 

More Music

  • Paradigm Agency Cuts 30 Staff Positions,

    Paradigm Agency Cuts 30 Staff Positions, Mostly in Music

    Paradigm has made a significant cut to its staff, laying off about 30 agents and support staff or 4% of its employees, Variety has confirmed. Sources said most of the layoffs were in the music area at the agency and took place Friday.. Paradigm, which had about 700 employees prior to the layoffs, had no [...]

  • Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters

    Dave Grohl on Dimebag Darrell's Legacy, How Pantera Influenced the Foo Fighters

    Dave Grohl is thisclose to finishing a new Foo Fighters album. “It’s the record that we’ve threatened to make for a long time,” he says. “We’re finally doing something that’s surprising even us.” But on Thursday afternoon, Grohl is 100% focused on late Pantera guitarist Dimebag Darrell Abbott, who is being honored that night at [...]

  • Grammy Awards 60th Annual Grammy Awards,

    Recording Academy Paid Millions Annually to Outside Law Firms

    Among the concerns listed in a memo sent to the Recording Academy’s head of HR by president/CEO Deborah Dugan before she was placed on administrative leave Thursday was an item about the organization’s “exorbitant and unnecessary” legal fees to outside law firms, according to sources familiar with the document. According to the most recent 990 [...]

  • Bob Mould

    Bob Mould Showcases Catalog, Ejects Right Wing Heckler at Tour Opener

    Bob Mould kicked off a somewhat unusual solo electric tour at the Narrows Center for the Arts in Fall River, Mass. last night, with a 75-minute set that drew evenly from across his four decade career. Mould may have embraced a sunnier perspective since moving to Berlin three years ago — as evidenced by his [...]

  • Naaz

    Italy's Meduza, Dutch singer Naaz Among Winners at Music Moves Europe Talent Awards

    Italian electronic producers Meduza, Norway’s Girl In Red, and Dutch singer Naaz (pictured) were among the winners at the second annual Music Moves Europe Talent Awards, which took place Friday, Jan. 17 in the Netherlands. The honor, formerly known as the European Border Breakers Award (EBBA), went to eight artists in total, as well as [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content