First Person

Music fans fight hunger at Bonnaroo 2011

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Photo: Oxfam America
Oxfam supporters at a flash-mob march for social justice at Bonnaroo. Photo: Oxfam America

For the fourth consecutive year, Oxfam America hosted a booth at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. Held in Manchester, Tennessee last weekend, and widely regarded as one of the world’s premier (and greenest) music festivals, Bonnaroo draws approximately 80,000 people from around the world. This year it featured performances by more than 175 artists.

Bolstered by Oxfam-supporting artists on the festival’s bill like Arcade Fire, Explosions In The Sky, G. Love & Special Sauce, Ben Sollee, Mavis Staples, Nicole Atkins, The Decemberists, Deer Tick and Amos Lee, our team of 10 music outreach reps generated support for Oxfam’s new GROW campaign to fix a broken food system.

Iconic gospel singer Mavis Staples shows her support. Photo: Bob Ferguson / Oxfam America
Iconic gospel singer Mavis Staples. Photo: Bob Ferguson / Oxfam America

We even created a fully-set-for-dinner “Table For Nine Billion” in Planet Roo, the area set aside on the concert grounds for non-profits, to allow people to visualize how we can sustainably feed a growing population—complete with menus that served up Oxfam’s five-point plan to respond to the emerging food crisis. By the time the sun set on the last evening of the festival, more than 3,600 people had signed on as Oxfam supporters.

Bonnaroo Oxfam table for 9bn
Photo: Clara Herrero / Oxfam America

All of it set the stage for the rest of our concert outreach season this summer, where you’ll find Oxfam volunteers at shows by Fitz & The Tantrums, Flogging Molly, Maroon 5, Dave Matthews Band, Ben Sollee, Guster, Ra Ra Riot, and with our music ambassador DJ Shadow on the IDentity Festival Tour.

Photo: Clara Herrero / Oxfam America
Photo: Clara Herrero / Oxfam America

If you weren’t able to attend Bonnaroo this year but would like to feel part of it all, we can help in a few ways: Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Google+