ROTHBURY v ROTHBURY|ROUND I
ROTHBURY v ROTHBURY
Good, Da Bad, De Ugli
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“Is the glass half empty or half full? This really comes down to perception.
Now we here at TheRFW.com never intend to force feed anything down your throat – especially our opinions; however, it is important to know we do (just like each of you) share different views and weather our own forecasts how we see fit. That being said, ROTHBURY 2009 was an amalgam of bits and pieces that make festivals great. Unfortunately, in comparison to the 2008 experience, we question if the puzzle was ever locked in place correctly. So – instead of saying, “YEAH!” or “NAY,” we are going to give you our perspectives. Two very different ways of viewing ROTHBURY ’09. Take it as you will and enjoy the photography of Andrew Wyatt. Our video feature(s) are in post editing and as soon as they are green we’ll share.
No matter what is communicated, it’s agreed by all of us that ROTHBURY was a fantastic time and we can’t wait to shake Michigan up again in 2010!” - Rashon A. Massey, Co-Creator, Roving Festival Writer
Monday, July 13, 2009
Contributing Writer : Portia Mathews
Contributing Photographer : Andrew “Disco Santa” Wyatt
There was a change in Rothbury this year. Whether it directly affected the front of house, staff, artists, and/or media isn’t important – it’s the awareness.
With much of my time spent in the media area, I drenched myself with the good life and yearned for the familiarities of the previous year, but as a veteran of Rothbury, walking the grounds was truly a bit disappointing. Where were my favorite sights from ’08?
I no longer had the pleasure of watching the monkeys swing vine-to-vine near the missing circus/environment tent. Sherwood Forest was by far my favorite attraction and I was most anxious to revisit it; however, by night fall it was gorgeously lit but all a bit too familiar. Walking through during daylight hours was unimpressive, an area featuring a bar surrounded by trees. Was it that necessary for guests to be intoxicated?
Granted there was a lot less of everything at the festival from less bathing stations, poor port-a-potty conditions, visual and interactive stations throughout the grounds and vendor selections, it very well can be implied that major focus was on the media/artist area.
The Broken Spoke is where artists, media, and guests intermingled with bottomless booze, free food, merchandise, massages, shade, clean port-a-johns, couches, a free photo booth and on occasion a DJ. In this community, the Broken Spoke would be the major city, the place everyone would travel to for a happenin’ time.
Rothbury is dedicated to keeping Michigan clean and educating attendees to rinse-reuse-and recycle. As last year, they had Compose, Landfill, and Recycling trash cans located throughout the park. Spitfire agency was responsible for collecting and sorting through all the trash both inside the event, and at an offsite location, behind the scenes if you will. Rothbury is the most progressive festival in terms of greening. Jackie, a volunteer from Chicago said, “We choose 3 shifts, stay at one post for about 7 hours, and we try to educate people. It’s a good balance.” It is important with a crowd of Rothbury’s size to have a good system to minimize hazardous and unnecessary waste. They are taking strides to improve their process every year and their efforts are beyond impressive.
Sadly I missed the selection of artists from last year. In 2008, I felt no matter what you listened to there was music for everyone to enjoy. This year it seemed to be a block of similar sounding bands. On next year’s bill it would be nice to see a more diverse group of artists hitting the stage. With that said, I was pleased and genuinely happy to be there, especially in the media area. I don’t know if I would have enjoyed myself as much if I had solely partaken in general admission luxuries, but I did because the folk behind Madison House Inc. sure know how to throw a party.