By MBF Ultimate Ticket Giveaway Winner Corinne Desterdick
Camp Bisco Review
The music at Camp Bisco was awesome and everyone knew it. There were lots of bands there I knew and a few I didn't. I got to listen to quite a bit. There were lots of artists on many stages. The BIG tent was the closest to where I was camped (literally about a two minute walk) so that is the stage I most frequented. There was an abundance of artists in the BIG tent I was very unfamiliar with that played while other, more well known acts were on the other many stages. That was my favorite tent. Some of my favorite acts that played there were Mimosa and Dada Life. Both acts provided crazy visuals on large screens behind the artists as well as splendid light shows. I also caught some other acts under that tent while on my way to others and realized that there were many artists that were not as big as ones on the main stages (aka Skrillex and Big Gigantic) but were equally as good if not better. It was sad to see that there wasn't a greater turn out for them however it also worked out for me because I got to hoop with nobody smashing into me, which leads me into The Disco Biscuits and Big Gigantic.
Big Gigantic was sick with an awesome light show, and splendid music HOWEVER the crowd was so disrespectful it was a disgrace. People smashing into one another, fighting for their way to the front was killing my vibe as well as many people just walking into me while I was hooping quite a far away distance from the stage (to be respectful of others without hoops or fire or any other dance play things.) My hoop was smashed into at LEAST 12 times before I gave up. With a big crowd you'd expect a little of that but most passed by without as much as a "sorry." It was very disappointing. Of course I do not fault the artist for this however, it did make me move on and find other acts to see which SUCKED considering the fact that Big Gigantic was so awesome. The mosh dance kind of vibe just isn't my thing.
The Disco Biscuits played every night almost three times a day and it was glorious to see them. The vibe there was amazing, nobody smashed into me and anyone who may have by accident always gave a heartfelt apology, even helping me pick up my hoop. (it only happened two or three times, which is understandable.) Their light shows were amazing, I couldn't even believe it and it literally took my breath away. The jams they laid down were beautiful and I just got this great feeling from the crowd.
Now here is something that may not seem to pertain to music but I find significantly important to this category. I got to the festival at nearly 8PM on Friday. YES, 8PM. The main road that goes to the festival had a bridge that was out, and when I got to the road there was merely a cone with an attached paper saying DEAD END, BRIDGE IS OUT. Above on the same cone it said "CAN'T YOU READ?" I got significantly lost considering I didn't have a GPS (it wasn't working) so I had NO CLUE what to do. There wasn't anyone there to help. No bikers, police, or voluenteers standing there re-directing you where to go. NOTHING. On the interstate there was a sign saying "Mariahville concert take exit 22" even though my directions said 23. Armed with nothing but my Mapquest Directions, I continued on, considering that if I went to exit 22, I would have no further directions and would have NEVER GOTTEN THERE. Once arriving at the traffic cone my boyfriend and I had no idea what to do. We turned around from the "dead end" road and proceeded down the road we were already on before we made our left turn. There was an orange sign that said, "Detour -->" that pointed straight toward the woods. NO HELP WHATSOEVER. We drove down that road for quite some time until we decided to turn around and go to the dead end road, to see if we could ask some local residents where to go. Like I said, we went to the DEAD END road and NOBODY was there to help us. Luckily there was an older woman (THANK GOD) who was out getting our mail who gave us very very simple directions on how to get to the detour. Why these were not posted where the makeshift "dead end" sign was, I will never know. THESE SHOULD HAVE BEEN POSTED ON THE WEBSITE. THE WOMAN WHO LIVED ON THE ROAD SAID THE BRIDGE HAD BEEN OUT SINCE LAST YEAR. I find that absolutely ridiculous, a complete waste of time, and a middle finger in the face to anyone who was attending. To simply not post valuable information that has been available for months for customers who had paid a large amount of money to be there was in my mind preposterous.
ANYWAY, Once arriving at the festival site you were supposed to have your ID, Tickets, and parking pass in hand. We got to someone and they saw our tickets, and put wristbands on us, not checking our IDs at all (this years event had an age of 16 or over which is different since in all years past there was no specific age necessary to attend) I do not believe anyone took this very seriously because nobody checked our IDs or even asked for them. In addition I saw people inside that looked like they were younger than 16. I am not saying they were not 16 but if nobody is checking IDs that shouldn't be on the website. Next We drove and continued to drive as people in yellow vests kept flowing their flags in one direction we were meant to follow. Once our car was searched we drove on with nobody telling us where to park. Every yellow vest we saw we told we had car camping and we asked where to park, they kept directing us to someone else. Getting in was very easy, no line (because it was almost 8PM) but when we kept telling everyone about our car camping pass they just directed us to general camping. We got a spot far from the main stage but very very close to the BIG tent which was a-ok by me. However, I was angry to find out that bunches of people who arrived before and after me did not purchase a car camping pass and were camped right next to us. Clearly making the car camping pass, unnecessary. It seemed like whoever was running it just wanted everyone's extra $20. Once walking around I saw messes of people camped with their car (I didn't see one that wasn't!) and I asked many of them about the pass. They did not purchase one. I find this ridiculous.
All of that said, I missed EVERY ACT I had wanted to see on Friday. When I got in Skrillex was just about to end and I was setting up my tent. Needless to say, I was pissed. Which is exactly why this all pertains to the music. Due to the disorganization of information available, I missed A LOT of music on Friday which could have easily been avoidable. In addition, I was not handed a lineup pamphlet when arriving so I didn't know who was playing when! I was beyond upset. Thankfully this year there was a wooden INFORMATION area where you could get them but I ended up getting one at almost 10PM. You shouldn't have to wait that long to know who's playing when, when you've paid almost $200 a ticket. All that said and done, I saw some amazing acts with spectacular audio/video. Can't find a thing wrong with that! :]
The site this year was all decked out and honestly awesome. It was clear that the people in charge took the over capacity of last years event and planned ahead for this year. There were clear spots outlined in white chalk where you had a car/tent space and many, many garbage cans scattered EVERYWHERE. Last year it was just, park where we say and figure it out, and the garbage cans were sparse. This year, like last year they asked if anyone wanted extra trash/recycling bags which was great. (I'm all about keeping our planet clean, WE SHARE IT PEOPLE!) But although there were many garbage cans, there were very few recycling spots this year. It was unclear what should go where so most things were just all put together.
As far as campsites, most all of them were clean, ALL WEEKEND. I believe this is due to the many available garbage cans. The organization CLEAN VIBES came around at least twice a day picking up the trash and putting it into trucks to move to large dumpsters in a different area of the campground. CLEAN VIBES also came around after each set to clean up all the litter (THERE WAS SO MUCH, especially after big acts) every time another act came on. Cleanly wise, Bisco was cleaner than ever with the exception of roads. It was cleaner than last but still littered with cola cans and water bottles throughout the fest, as much as CLEAN VIBES and great people tried to keep it clean, it was an impossible feat. However, like I said, much cleaner than Biscos past. Keep in mind this is my 2nd Camp Bisco and my boyfriend Brents 4th.
Bathrooms were also cleaner than ever! I am so pleased to report that the Port A Pottys were cleaned (it seemed like) every day! I went into one at the near end of the fest as did Brent and we both had a MUCH more pleasant experience than last year. There were plenty available in multiple areas and they were relatively clean considering the amount of people there. This year there were even INDOOR BATHROOMS. I'm not sure who they were provided by, as there wasn't a company name on them, but they operated purely on their own voluenteers. They operated out of what seemed like a very very large trailer, they purchased everything, had an operating sink and hand sanitizer, soap and hairspray, as well as shower curtains over bathrooms stalls with toilet paper and flushing toilets, FOR EVERYONE, not just VIPs. It was great to see, and they asked for nothing but tips with what you could afford. I tipped each time I used, it's something that you just can't put a price on, to use a REAL bathroom at a festival. Those are what I used for the majority of my festival experience. Last year the port a pottys were so overfull that people were going everywhere. On peoples campsites, in the woods, right in front of peoples hammocks. It was disgusting, I unfortunately had to go in the woods last year because they were over capacity with attendees so I stepped in something very less than desireable. Needless to say, this year beat the hell out of last year as far as organization, cleanliness, and overall generosity.
The scene this year was DECKED OUT! Camp Bisco provided beautiful, visually stimulating art, everywhere. There was a large white board with permanent markers where you could create art (provided additionally in previous years) but this year they went over the top. By the BIG tent There was the circle of life in light structure made of lights over top of walking areas, the sides of the walking areas glowed blue, there was a TUNNEL OF LIGHT (the area from the two main stages to the BIG TENT, it's a long stretch of walkway) which was comprised of various strings of multi colored lights all throughout a walking area, (it was so beautiful and visually awesome that people just sat there in the dirt path for hours.) hehe. There was the kind of stretched fabric you usually see at festivals, that projected the light, and so much more. Behind the main two stages there were wooden pictures of different visuals ie. women dancing, and viewed from the back it looked like the lot of black wooden shadow mini structures (they were flat and painted black on the backs) were dancing and having a great time with one another. Another area they had was a stretched fabric, the ones you see overhead to project light, that was huge and at night it projected light and images from another area. There was also an additional area like this that had paint splattered all over it and at night it was all kinds of awesome.
In addition there was a HUGE LIGHTED FERRIS WHEEL. The line was three miles long both day and night so I didn't get a chance to ride but to even just look at it was awesome. (Oh, the huge bummer about it, $5 to ride, it should be FREE!) Lastly there was a large sitting area, there were no seats, just three large screens on the ground, connected, all showing large images that were displayed on the entirety of the three screens. The images were a feed I'm assuming and were very, what one would call, "trippy." There was a space fetus, a shadow man rowing a canoe through strange planes of outdoor terrain, something with tentacles blooming into some sort of strange flower (...i think?) and huge animals looking at you with holes where their eyes should be. They still made facial expressions, so it seemed as though they were "looking" without eyes. I spent quite a bit of time there. The scene did lack activities to do as a group aside from color wars which were described as different things like dodgeball and whatnot but those weren't the kinds of activities I wanted to do in 90something degree heat. I would've loved a nice yoga sesh (I'd even heard some people suggest it!!) but Bisco doesn't seem to be a place where all people would enjoy that. It seemed mostly like a party scene, more party, less community. It also seemed like people were generally less giving which brings me to something else I'd really love to touch on. Lastly I'd like to divide up my description of Camp Bisco with another category...
There were many unfriendly vibes at this event. There were many people selling "substances" of all sorts that were tested and found to be fake. My boyfriend and I went to THE BUNK POLICE tent and went around testing all sorts of peoples things. We did buy the test kits but we made it known throughout the campsites that we would test anyones substances for free. If we can do something to save lives, it's important to be active and do your part. The test kits were $20 for a fifty use kit. We walked around and asked people if they wanted anything tested, just random people passing by, people at our neighboring campsites. We had a little table set up so we made use of it and tested for free to anyone who wanted. Every single sample except ONE came up as something it was not sold as. Even the one MDMA sample that we tested which turned black (a good reaction) fizzled, signaling that it was cut with baking soda. All LSD came up as a research chemical, and one MDMA sample came up as METHAMPHETAMINE. I believe drug testing to be a very part of both scene and vibes. I am a huge believer in THE BUNK POLICE. Although I do not work for them or promote them for any profit, it is a FACT that there are some people who use illegal substances at festivals. Some more harmful than others factually. In addition it is another FACT that some people do not believe in the worth of a human life. People will use you for their own personal gain and sell you something that is not real, not caring what it will do to another human being. Toward the end of the festival, I got a horrible vibe from most selling these substances. It made me physically ill to think about. People of the festival scene, thank whatever being you believe in for THE BUNK POLICE. Many people try to do bad things or say bad things to these people in order to make a profit. They SAVE LIVES. That is a good vibe I got. That someone was out there putting their ass on the line making a difference in the festival community.
On to other more beautiful things...I got great vibes from many people there. With the exception of the people there to see the HUGE BANDS I met all kinds of beautiful people in all kinds of places. Laying in the grass, I found a hilarious sarcastic guy with a beautiful soulful girl who taught me how to dread my hair and did it for me even though I was grossly sweaty. One girl I met at the bathroom had beautiful glitter all over her arms, I complimented her and we had a ten minute conversation about something I can't recall and she offered to share her glitter with me and we shook our arms at parting, some of her magical glitter rubbing off on me. One neighboring couple to our left were so sweet and just soft spoken and kind. We spoke to them for about an hour although it seemed like much more. The neighbor to our right, "Jeff" was simply splendid, very nice, and we spent quite a bit of time with him helping him put his tent together and just generally sharing the supplies we both had, as well as a few stories and journeys to the main stage. The first night I was having a horrible experience, and was just generally sad that although more organized, it seemed that Camp Bisco would be a waste.
The vibes I got from everyone were generally distasteful and overall it seemed like everyone was a liar, and nearly everyone was rude. However, someone said something that stuck with me. We met a couple at the main stage and for about 5 minutes we talked, I don't remember the guys name but his girlfriends name was "Madison." I remember her name because I thought it was just beautiful. They seemed beautiful souls and reminded both my boyfriend and I that, "there are still good people out there, you just have to look." We met gentile souls with intelligent minds, someone named, "Nick" who was willing to share his time and whatever he had with ANYONE and EVERYONE around him (such a beautiful person.) I also met a girl named "Anne" whom I hooped with and I seriously loved her spirit. She was always positive whenever I saw her! I also tried to teach a girl named, "Kara" how to hoop as well. She didn't quite get it but I'm sure some day she will.
Overall I would rate my Camp Bisco a 4 out of 5 stars for everything mentioned above. I did want to attend WANDERLUST COLORADO as my first choice but the generous contest gift came with a budget. I am truly thankful to everyone at MY BEST FEST for the experience I was so blessed to share with all I came into contact with. I cannot tell you if I will attend Camp Bisco 12, I have come to find that I enjoy the smaller festival experience, it's more community and cleaner. I'm not sure if it's as organized or has as many bells and whistles as Camp Bisco, and last years will hold it's place in my heart forever, just as this years will. All I can say is I'd much rather participate in a large jam session with people I don't know, then smash into people I don't know. Small festivals, to me, are where it's at and prove that even if it's not the BIGGEST party, it's always a party.