Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images Nine days after the deadly tornado that touched…
- Posted on Jan 22nd 2010 10:34PM by Benjy Eisen
When Rothbury launched in 2008, the four-day camping event positioned itself as the greenest festival in America, attempting to motivate its tens of thousands of attendees to be a little more eco-conscious in their own lives beyond the campsite gates, but it was also just an unbelievably fun party.
Part of its success was in its sheer scope as countless headlining acts performed amidst such attractions as an installation that earned the Guinness World Record distinction for being the largest canned food sculpture in the world (with all the cans being donated to a food drive), a truly enchanted forest and even morning yoga classes led by Michael Franti. Some of the acts that appeared at Rothbury include Dave Matthews Band (pictured), Widespread Panic, Trey Anastasio, John Mayer, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Sound Tribe Sector Nine (STS9) and the Dead. But, much like Bonnaroo, it was far from just being a hippie fest and it boasted an impressive roster that cut clear across genre lines.
In a statement issued to the media, the event organizers -- Madison House Productions and AEG Live -- say that "due to various artists' recording and touring schedules, we now believe that timing will not allow us to assemble the cutting edge roster that everyone has come to expect from Rothbury."
But there were also problems and resistance with the community that hosted Rothbury in the town of Rothbury, Mich. According to an article in the Muskegon Chronicle, the township was actively trying to pass an ordinance which would seemingly limit and restrict large events, including imposing an enforceable noise curfew. The township received complaints about the seemingly endless noise coming from the festival grounds around the clock. The Chonicle reports that there were indications that if such an ordinance passed, the event producers could very well pull the plug on it.
That said, those involved say that Rothbury will absolutely return in 2011. "Rothbury is more than a festival," states the official website. "It is a mission intended to discover strength in community, and what it means to be a large-scale sustainable event in these times. Our efforts are certainly not coming to an end." We certainly hope not.