So this time last year, I was lucky enough to win tickets to Bonnaroo from a local radio station. I was absolutely ecstatic, as you can imagine! I was under the impression at first that I had won VIP tickets, but I soon found out that they were actually what are called "Guest Passes."
I am writing this now for all of the people who are lucky enough to win Guest Passes to Bonnaroo 2011! After I learned that my tickets were not actually VIP, I started doing some research to find out exactly what my prize entailed. To my surprise, there was a mysterious lack of information on the internet about this kind of ticket, and the radio station also knew fairly little about them. So, here's the deal on Guest Passes, also referred to as "Comped Tickets."
Basically, this is a class of Bonnaroo fare that is unavailable for purchase. AC Entertainment, the production company that runs Bonnaroo, designates a certain number of these tickets to be given as prizes for contests. The only other way to get them is to know someone affiliated with the festival; for example, you could be friends with one of the bands that are performing, know a producer, etc.. These passes are different from GA tickets and VIP tickets. They are also not like the "Total Access" package that is available for purchase.
* Camping and parking in a special campground behind the Which Stage
* Access to the air conditioned Guest Hospitality Lounge + discounted food and drinks there
* Special viewing areas at the What and Which Stages
* Free showers that are located in Guest Camping
* Easier access to Centeroo via special access paths on the other side of the perimeter wall
* No security on the way in (at least in my experience)
* No lines to get into Centeroo
* A secret route to the farm which allows you to bypass all traffic
These passes are, in my experience, absolutely phenomenal. Guest Hospitality is located directly next to Artist Hospitality, and I was able to meet some of my favorite artists! :D Also, Guest Hospitality includes a shaded meadow with hammocks and twinkle lights in addition to the air conditioned tent. The Guest Campground, by the way, is the only campground with shade trees. The bleachers at the Which Stage constitute the special viewing area, which are shared with VIPers. The What Stage has bleachers that are exclusively for folks with Guest Passes, while the VIPers are siphoned to "The Mound" on the other side of the field.
So, while VIP ticket holders have access to air conditioned bathrooms and showers, among other things, those of you who are lucky enough to get Guest Passes are even better off than they are (IMHO) due to the access you are given to artists and shade.
Here's to Bonnaroo X!!!