June 10-13, Manchester, Tenn.
Top acts: Jay-Z, Stevie Wonder, Kings of Leon,
Dave Matthews Band, Norah Jones, Weezer
Tickets: $249
2009 attendance: 75,000
Site space: 700 acres

It’s safe to say the majority of outdoor music events these days have taken their cues from Bonnaroo. “It’s America’s best-known camping festival,” says Bongiovanni. Since 2002, the event has grown from a laidback jam to a 24-hour carnival of activities—with movies, comedy, yoga classes, disco dancing, a retro arcade and more.

“I go out there every year, walk around the corner and say, ‘Gee, I didn’t know we were doing that,’” says co-founder Capps with a laugh. But music still takes center stage at the four-day festival, as evidenced by the popular late-night concerts that often stretch into the early morning. This year one of those slots belongs to the much-anticipated performance of The Dark Side of the Moon by the Flaming Lips.

[Summer Festivals / May 2010, M Music & Musicians]

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