We have options when it comes to spending a week at Cornerstone. My first couple of years, we stayed in a hotel. While a hotel is nice, they aren’t exactly convenient to the grounds being in surrounding towns. Another option is the dorms at a nearby college. The most popular option (and the best in my opinion) is to camp on the grounds.
If you have been camping before, this is not like going to your local state park. Tents are everywhere. These grounds become a tent city for a week. A couple of days ago, two guys in a truck stopped me and asked, “Where are we supposed to camp?” I pointed and said, “Anywhere!’ And that is true with a few exceptions; obviously you can’t camp on the Main Stage or in a seminar tent.
Camping presents its challenges. With the exception of reserved RV spots, there is no water and electricity at the camp sites. Showers are available in the shower house in the middle camp, but most people seem to do without those. The weather often presents challenges. One year it was really hot; last year it rained; this year the nights are cool and perfect.
There are some huge advantages to camping. You save money, both on gas and on lodging, since when you bought your ticket you paid for a camp site. You are always close to everything. When we stayed in hotels, we didn’t make it out to the fest until late in the afternoon pretty much guaranteeing we would miss all the seminars and films as well as a huge portion of music.
As I have camped at Cornerstone the last three years, I have started to feel a connection with the place, the people. Cornerstone is often called a community, and you don’t get that feeling in the hotels. If you have never camped at Cornerstone before, consider it next year. The experience will be much more meaningful.