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Lightning in a Bottle 2011 Review


Lightning in a Bottle Art and Music Festival 2011 is now over. It was an amazing weekend at Oak Canyon Ranch in Orange County, CA. We spent Friday to Monday camping right by the Woogie stage. We arrived Friday afternoon and spent a few hours setting up camp and getting settled. We camped with about 20 of our friends right by the Woogie stage. The festival was set up similar to last year with three stages; The Lightning Stage, Bamboo Stage, and Woogie Stage. The music, however, took second stage to the art installations, amazing costumes, food vendors, and the beautiful nature surrounding Oak Canyon Ranch.

The Temple of Consciousness had been expanded this year to include a yoga sanctuary and the entire area was filled with a pleasant positive energy. People were meditating, doing yoga, listening to guest speakers, or eating from one of the food vendors. In between the Lightning stage and the Bamboo stage were most of the art installations. This area was also filled with many different kinds of performers (for example, jugglers or stilt walkers). In between the Woogie stage and Bamboo stage was a fairly large marketplace. The most popular item this year had to have been the bear hat as I saw probably 100 people wearing one!

As far as music we heard some decent stuff the first two days. Claude VonStroke was good, as expected and Nick Warren was pretty good, although Pretty Lights and Love & Lights were really not my style. Sunday is where the festival really came together for me. Syd Gris played a high energy set that got the crowd going at the Woogie stage and Pumpkin played a fun set with Bruce Springsteen, Blind Melon, Adele, and The Temper Trap edits. His set was followed by Lee Burridge who played three hours at sunset. It was truly the moment I been looking for all weekend. All of our friends were together, the crowd was amazing, and Lee played one of the best sets I have heard all year.

From what I heard the festival sold out on Sunday (the one day you could buy single day tickets). The Do Lab did a fantastic job again this year as it was an amazing weekend all around. The music was not the highlight for me this year (other than Lee Burridge), rather the amazing location, beautiful crowd, performers, and art is really what made it a unique experience.

Moving forward, however, I definitely feel there is a little room for improvement. From what I heard, some people waited up to 4 hours in line for will call on Thursday. The one shuttle taking the campers to the campground was not enough. It was constantly full and they could have used more of them. Also, the location of the Renegade stage, which was right by the Woogie stage, would have been better if it had been moved more towards the Bamboo or Lightning stages. And lastly, I have already decided that next year I will camp up by the Temple of Consciousness where the music won’t be blasting from 3:00PM to 7:00AM.

As this festival continues to grow in popularity from year to year, I am sure that next year they will sell out. So get your tickets early and a car camping pass is highly recommended.

Related posts:

  1. Lightning in a Bottle 2011 Preview - Lee Burridge
  2. Lightning in a Bottle 2011: Set Times announced ft. Lee Burridge, Claude VonStroke, and many more!
  3. Lightning in a Bottle: The Do LaB Presents, Lightning in Your Ear 2011
  4. Lightning in a Bottle
  5. Lightning in Bottle teaser video


  1. Empy says:

    A very beautiful, intimate event! Sunday was an amazing day.

    • amy says:

      does anyone know who the artist next to the bamboo stage was that had a painting of geometric pattern with a green beetle center? He was working on a painting of 3D honeycomb/M.C. Esher inspired geometric pattern between trees next the south exit. I never asked his name but I was amazed by his painting and want to purchase the beetle painting.

  2. Ryan says:

    Your post is like a mirror of my experience. we were camped in Lettuce patch and had the renegate problem but David Starfire was really cool on Saturday Night.

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