21 Things You Forgot to Pack for Bonnaroo

Camping is fun. Especially when you’re camping with 90,000 other people. In your focused state of planning out the perfect schedule, you might have left a few things out of your backpack. With seven years of being a Bonnaroo junkie under my belt, here are 21 items that have made my experience more enjoyable.


Item 20: The Fake Moustache

Most of these can be picked up at Wal-Mart, located across the street from festival grounds. I strongly recommend against shopping here. The population of Manchester more than triples this weekend so it’s an absolute madhouse.

If you are flying into Nashville, do your last minute shopping there. If you are driving, do your shopping before you leave home. If you are hitching, well, you’re just worried about getting there. Good luck!

1. Rain boots: Because there will be mud. And other stuff that looks like mud, but trust me, it isn’t.

2. Umbrella: Sit high and dry during a rainy set and snicker at everyone else who was unprepared. You’re kind of a jerk, you know that?

3. Tarps: For putting under your tent. Or talk your neighbors into making a tarp fort.

4. Rain Poncho: These are super cheap. Or make a homemade one of a trash bag.

5. Cards and a beer bong: I met some fellows at Summer Camp who hollowed out a wiffle ball bat and played the Louisville Chugger.

6. Brownies: Because they’re delicious and nutritious. Well, maybe not so much nutritious.

7. Camera: Even if you’re not a person that takes pictures, take your camera. Force yourself to take photos. Use these to piece together your weekend and determine if you had fun or if you should be running to the border.

8. Journal: Have all the cool people sign it like a school yearbook. Be forewarned: Everything that is written in it at Bonnaroo will seem “amazing” and “profound.” Reread when you get home and sober up.

9. Booze: It will break your bank to buy all your brew inside. Bring some cases and hide your goods under some blankets. The worst case scenario if you’re caught is that the security staff might keep to drink later. Remember cans only in Bonnaroo. Whisky tastes good. Whiskey in a plastic container? Now you’re getting it.

10. Thrift Store Camping Gear: This is important. If you have time, raid some thrift stores. Invest in some “Bonnaroo Gear” for when your sleeping bag magically “soils” itself.

11. Costumes: The silent disco is much better in costume! And then you can join the parade. What parade? You’ll see.

12. Cooler: For ice and beer and sitting on and using as a makeshift card table and standing on top of singing loudly at two in the morning.

13. Food: You’ll have to take a loan out if you plan on paying Bonnaroo prices all weekend for food. Stock up on nuts, granola, cereal bars, oranges, etc.

14. Water, Water, Water: However many jugs you have…double it.

15. Toilet Paper: You will need this. I promise.

16. Hand Sanitizer: See number #15.

17. Sunscreen: Because the only thing more reliable than rain showers at Bonnaroo is an awesome sunburn.

18. Sunglasses: Bring something cheap because you’re going to lose them.

19. Bug Repellent: Have you ever been to Tennessee in June?

20. Fake Mustaches: Just in case you need to quickly disguise your identity.

21. Folding Chairs. To kick back and rest. Or pass out. The choice is up to you.

Bonnaroo= good people, good music, and good times. Be safe and make it memorable!

Armed with only a camera and a fanny pack, you never know what festival Coco will end up at next. Our resident festival expert floats from deepwoods hippie jam fests to downtown rock bashes to dive bar showcase festivals.