One of the east coast’s largest music festivals, Firefly has almost doubled in size since 2012 when 40,000 attendees rocked out at the inaugural event. In 2014, Firefly unveiled a new layout to the festival, moving the main stage to a new location to allow for less congestion while viewing the big ticket acts. However, with 70,000+ fans on hand this year, there was still a good deal of overcrowding at all of the stages during many of the most popular performances. It wasn’t as bad as it was last year but there is definitely still room for some improvement in 2015.
In addition to the great performances by the individual bands/artists, the pop-up collaborations always make Firefly a real treat. This year the Lumineers appeared with Jack Johnson, Cage the Elephant appeared with Imagine Dragons, and Big Gigantic appeared with Pretty Lights, just to name a few.
Whether fans commuted to the festival for a single day, daily, or camped out in a tent or RV for the entirety of the festival, there was no shortage of things to see and do on site. When not watching a big stage performance, attendees could relax in the Hammock Hangout, knock back some craft brews in the Brewery, play video games, dance in the Silent Disco in The Thicket, shop for custom wares in The Marketplace, frolic in glowing forest installations, grab a coffee and watch a more intimate performance at the Coffee House (where some bigger bands like Iron & Wine and Grouplove also performed), or stuff their faces with any number of tasty things to eat. The food choices were many and ranged from healthy vegan kale salads to deep fried macaroni and cheese bites filled with hotdogs or bacon cheeseburger. If you happened to have VIP or Super VIP access, you had even more options for drinks, food, and activities.
The campground hubs each had a smaller stage cultivated by Redbull artists, showers, food trucks, Walgreens, toilets, recharging stations, and places to purchase ice. The individual campsites got a little gross towards the end of the weekend. Some people need to take better responsibility and clean up after themselves (your mom probably wasn’t there to do it for you). There were problems in the campsites again this year as well. The lines for the showers often extended for well over an hour, bathroom lines were entirely too long in the morning (when it’s often not easy to hold it with a full bladder), and on several occasions we heard complaints that the ice stations were out of ice.
Firefly has already announced the dates for the 2015 festival which will take place from June 18-21st of next year.
[Photo credit: D. Jacob Miller Photography]
[Article and interviews by David J. Miller]
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