~ Wakarusa 2007 ~
June 7-10

Michael Franti and painted ladies.
I was hesitant to buy tix for Wakarusa this year after the horrid treatment of fans and bands alike in 2006. I wouldn't have gone but Ms V had never seen Franti and had never been to a festival so with one only 90 miles away it seemed a shame to miss this one. It would have been a shame to have missed Wakrusa in 2007 because, as promised, the cops and security were on a short leash. Gone was the oppressive police presence of 2006. Gone was the second main stage that caused daily conflicts. Gone too were most of the smaller stages. The revival tent, a landmark in the main venue, remains as well as the Camp Stage with it's large tent and a smaller stage in a second venue. It would have been a shame because it turned out to be one of the best, if not THE best festival I have attended.
The lineup was good, real good! Besides the big shows at the main stage we saw good acts in the Revival Tent and had two smaller stages right in our backyard. Speaking of Backyard, Backyard Tire Fire, a favorite of ours from Summer Camp was there as well as Cornmeal. In fact there was an abundance of smaller bands that were really impressive.
Some pix have mouseover captions and all get bigger if you click 'em. Enjoy!

Beth and I packed everything into the truck Wednesday night and got a good early start Thursday morning planning on arriving just before 8am for gates. Talking with friend KP while driving, we planned to meet and go in together to maximize our camping space but we did not forsee or even imagine the possibility that against all odds we would arrive at exactly the same second. Talking on the phone for the second time that morning KP asked if he was supposed to exit Kansas 10 at Clinton Parkway and I replied yes that was correct just as I was exiting myself comming from the west. When he told me he was exiting (from the east) I asked him to look under the overpass and see if there was a truck at the opposite stop sign. It was pretty amazing to come different distances from different directions and pull into line right next to one another! I knew we were going to be favored for the weekend! We drove right in, no searches and no holdups and were directed to our spot. Our spot turned out to be on the corner of the two main festival streets, about halfway between the two venues. We had a General Store across the street one way and ice, portas, and showers right across the other street and water on our corner. We were at the buss and taxi stop and right across from Disk Golf. Best of all we had the best neighbors anyone could hope for. More about them later.
After an enjoyable afternoon around camp we headed for shows. The main stage wasn't used opening day but the Revival tent was open for business with North Mississippi Allstars. Shows went on on four stages til 4:30a. Lots of the usual early arrival day crazy hippie dancing. Didn't lose my shoes but did smash a toe. Don't remember how. We stopped often to pose at the main gate.
North Mississippi Allstars in the Revival Tent.
Yoga early Friday.
It doesn't look bad but it really hurt to walk, the whole toe was bruised and black.  Not a real concern as it is pretty much understood that I'm going to damage my feet the first night.
Neighbors Beth and Ryan at Backyard Tire Fire
BTF really rocks the house.  See them if you can.
They're always smiling!
V arrived and was able to drive right to the camp and park with us. We were in Camp Equinox at the corner of Second Street and Wakarusa Way. With a large open and grassy area there was entertainment all the time. Jugglers, musicians and especially hoopers were always doing something fun. Ocassionally we took the whole show to a venue lol.

KP and V at the sound booth of the Main Stage.  Railroad Earth and North Mississippi Allstars were on that afternoon.

Back at the Camp Stage U-Melt ripped it up.  Lots of crazy hippie dancing here!
The Road Show!

Saturday morinng Cornmeal put on a solid show at the Revival tent. Waka loves hot fiddle chicks!

We made it back to the Camp Stage to cathc most of Dirtfoot.
Neighbor Jen starts hooping...
..and picked it up quickly.
They look so innocent...
...but you just know they're up to something.
Backyard Tire Fire again!
BTF wrings out the dancing in everyone.  or maybe it was the drinks.

Back to the Main Stage for Widespread Panic.
By this time we were pretty much out of control.  HEY V this is Mary, your new Mom!
Bonfire and drum circle nightly a the Cam Stage.
I have no recolection of taking these pictures...
...but I was apparently laying on the ground.

It started raining on the way back to camp...
..but it was not cold and we had plenty of cover to watch the traffic go by.
Sunday morning was pretty laid back making plans for the last night. Marlene from SV stopped by for a visit. She told of getting onstage with Michael and reading her prize winning poem about returning vets. We saw her at the show but she had made her way to front and center. The VIP area at Waka is obscenely huge and it keeps the loyal fans at too much a distance from the stage. --steps off soapbox--


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