The competition promotion firm behind large names like Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, and Austin Metropolis Limits is throwing its muscle behind a model new occasion to be held this summer season at Bethel Woods Heart for the Arts, the hallowed floor of the unique Woodstock Competition. The inaugural, people/Americana-themed Catbird Music Competition will happen at Bethel in Sullivan County on August 19 and 20, a collaboration between the venue, Dwell Nation, and C3 Presents.
“We’ve wished to work with C3 Presents for a very long time—we at all times discovered them to be very inventive of their festivals,” says Eric Frances, CEO of Bethel Woods. “We had reached out years in the past, then we acquired sidetracked with the fiftieth anniversary of Woodstock, then COVID occurred.” When a rep lastly visited the property final summer season for a rustic present and a tour of the property he instantly noticed the potential and thought a collaboration was overdue.
“If you stand over that area, you are feeling one thing,” Frances says. “It’s most likely what the unique promoters felt once they walked the sector with Max [Yasgur.] There’s something right here that’s past all of us—plus how lovely it’s. And there’s lots of house to do issues and be very inventive with using the property.”
The 2-day competition shall be headlined by the Lumineers on Saturday and breakout people/nation star Tyler Childers on Sunday. Different large title acts embrace The Struggle on Medicine, Dispatch, Trey Anastasio Band, Charlie Crockett, and Amos Lee. “We’re going for that Americana really feel. In that realm, sooner or later we may have anybody from the Brandi Carlisles to the Chris Stapletons of the world,” Frances says. “The undercard this yr may be very, very cool too. There’s lots of room in that lineup for everybody to seek out one thing they like.”
Anastasio will little question draw an enormous crowd of Phishheads (the band has performed Bethel near 10 occasions over the previous decade). “That’s an viewers that’s undoubtedly attuned to the Woodstock story,” Frances says. “We felt they wanted to be represented there as nicely. They tie into what Woodstock was and their predecessors just like the Grateful Useless.”
Frances is considerate about connections with the unique Woodstock Competition. In his eyes, its legacy is the throughline that permeates all that they do at Bethel Woods right now. “There have been completely different genres again then than there at the moment are, but it surely’s nonetheless about bringing folks right here and getting them to expertise the magic of the location, which transcends genres of music and types of artwork,” he says. “Most individuals neglect that the complete title of the competition was Woodstock Music and Artwork Honest. There was an artwork present and an entire bunch of out of doors artwork installations. There’s a lot richness to the Woodstock story. It turned the precursor to Burning Man and all these different issues. We’re pertaining to that in our work right here day by day with the museum, youngsters packages, songwriting workshops, and extra.”
Even the competition’s title, Catbird, urged by a Bethel worker is a callback to the well-known authentic Woodstock poster, which featured a catbird perched atop the guitar (not a dove as many suppose). Frances explains that it’s also a playful nod to the area—the Sullivan County Catabilities. Ha.
And like these authentic three days of peace and music, Bethel will convey again onsite tenting for Catbird, with choices starting from tent and pop-up tenting to glamping tents and RV websites plus ADA websites. Prematurely of the competition, Bethel shall be putting in water and in-ground sewears.
“It’s all coming collectively to make use of the property absolutely,” says Frances. “Anytime folks sleep right here, it’s type of fascinating. I feel that’s a part of the Woodstock expertise, so I’m excited for that.” There hasn’t been tenting on-site for the reason that 2019 Mountain Jam Competition and, earlier than that, an electronica competition they examined out within the early days of Bethel.
On the meals entrance, choices shall be curated by Joel Trocino, Govt Chef at Bethel Woods and up to date recipient of the Chef of the 12 months award for Legends Hospitality. “There’s a lot nice meals out there right here in Catskills—we’ve acquired farms, poultry, and beef,” Frances says. “[Joel] may be very cognisant of utilizing native substances. So I feel you’ll see actually good meals right here that weekend.”
With 1,000 acres and a mass gathering allow for 30,000, Catbird at Bethel Woods has the potential to draw a big variety of guests and financial improvement to the area. “It’s a extremely good line-up for the maiden voyage of a competition,” Frances says. “We’re actually excited right here. We would like folks to return right here and say, ‘take a look at what Woodstock has grow to be.’ Hopefully this turns into a kind of flagship occasions that outlives me.”
Catbird Music Competition will happen August 19-20 at Bethel Woods Heart for the Arts in Bethel. Tenting and common tickets for Catbird may be bought on-line.