August 2024 marks the 55th anniversary of the 1969 Woodstock festival, a landmark event of baby-boomerdom dedicated to peace, love, mud, and a once-in-a-lifetime musical lineup that included, across 3 days of performances, Jimi Hendrix, The Who, Janis Joplin, Sly and the Family Stone, Santana, Joan Baez, and, for some reason, Sha Na Na.
The festival unfolded on the grounds of a dairy farm in Bethel, New York—not in the town of Woodstock, which is about 60 miles to the northeast. (It's a long story.)
Since 2006, the grounds of the legendary event have been the home of the nonprofit Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, where concerts and other performances take place in an amphitheater and a smaller indoor venue. There's also a museum chronicling the happenings of August 1969 and related topics.
And, as of 2024, there's a campground, too.
(Aerial view of Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in New York State | Credit: Bethel Woods Center for the Arts)
For the arts center's 2024 concert season, which starts in May and lasts into October, Bethel Woods is offering, for the first time, a "spectrum of options" for campers, ranging from standard tent and RV sites to "glamping experiences for those seeking a touch of luxury in the outdoors," according to a press release.
Situated near the amphitheater, the most luxurious units can accommodate up to six people and are outfitted with bedding and furniture, Wi-Fi, full bathrooms with showers, and private outdoor decks.
Another option: furnished bell tents, big enough for one or two guests, with bedding and an electrical power strip for charging devices. These tents don't have their own bathrooms but overnighters will have access to nearby restrooms and free shower facilities.
(Bell tents at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in New York State | Credit: Bethel Woods Center for the Arts)
Visitors who bring their own tents can reserve one of several 20-feet-by-20-feet grass sites for up to four people (additional guest passes can be purchased for larger parties). Portable toilets, hand-washing stations, and showers are all nearby.
Additional sites and hookups for RVs and cars can be found across the street.
The tent and glamping options, however, are on the grounds of the actual venue. Which is a looker, encompassing 1,800 acres in the Sullivan Catskills, a woodsy, mountainous landscape a little more than 100 miles north of New York City.
According to Albany's Times Union newspaper, camping at Bethel Woods will only be available to concertgoers, who will be able to purchase campsite reservations as an add-on to admission for any concert or event upon checkout.
The roster of acts scheduled to hit the stage at Bethel Woods this summer includes Alanis Morisette, Hozier, Melissa Etheridge, and Hootie & the Blowfish, among others. (Sorry, but Sha Na Na stopped touring in 2022.)
Rates for camping at Bethel Woods start at $159.50 for tent sites, $299.50 for glamping in the bell tents, and $469.50–$689.50 for luxury glamping units. Car camping starts at $99.50, and RV camping starts at $159.50.
For more information, go to BethelWoodsCenter.org.