The legendary 1969 Woodstock festival in Bethel, New York, created a sense of social harmony that made it one of the most culturally significant events of the last century. Max Yasgur, who owned the field where it was held, saw it as a victory of peace and love—one that lives on in the site’s current incarnation. The historic grounds, now extending to 800 pristine acres, are home to a world-class performing arts center: Bethel Woods Center for the Arts.
This not-for-profit organization, governed by an independent board of trustees, includes a Pavilion Stage amphitheater with seating for 15,000; an intimate 440-seat indoor Event Gallery; an award-winning Museum; and a Conservatory for arts education. While preserving and interpreting the cultural, social and political events of the 1960s remains a guiding force for the center, the emphasis is on looking toward the future and providing the region with the highest quality entertainment, educational and cultural experiences possible.This summer, superstars from Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga to Neil Young and Jackson Browne take to the Pavilion stage to entertain hundreds of thousands of guests. Arts and humanities-based programs like P.L.A.Y: Theatre, P.L.A.Y: Music and Project Identity: Sessions offer participants opportunities for empowerment, education and inspiration. Classic cinema under the stars is on the program for Moonlit Movie Mondays on the outdoor terrace stage. And in the Event Gallery, there is classical music on Sundays with Friends Chamber Music Series and the Bradstan Cabaret Series, as well as intimate performances from the likes of former Yankee Bernie Williams and Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes.
The Museum, housed in a beautiful LEED-certified green building set back from the top of the Woodstock festival hillside, offers an immersive and captivating multi-media experience that combines film and interactive displays, text panels and artifacts to tell the story of the 1960s. Its programming and learning opportunities feature continually evolving exhibits and moving film and lecture series. Currently on display is THREADS, a special exhibit presented in collaboration with Andy Hilfiger, which connect 60s fashion to modern rockwear.
200 Hurd Road, Bethel, NY