Woodstock Site Comes Alive

The site of the 1969 Woodstock Festival will again come alive with music July 1st when the New York Philharmonic performs at the new Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, kicking off the facility’s inaugural season.

The venue, offering a 4,800-seat covered pavilion and a lawn area that can accommodate 12,000, will host a variety of concerts including Phil Lesh & Friends, Ashlee Simpson, Chris Botti, Counting Crows and Goo Goo Dolls, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Bethel Woods officials are co-producing the season with Live Nation and producer John Schreiber.

The new facility won’t be hosting crowds as large as the original Woodstock concert, which attracted about 400,000 people. Local regulations limit crowd size at 30,000.

Businessman Alan Gerry spearheaded the project more than two years ago through his not-for-profit Gerry Foundation. He began purchasing land around the former Woodstock site, once known as Max Yasgur’s farm, in Bethel, N.Y., in the late ’90s with the goal of bringing money to his beloved Sullivan County.

A Woodstock festival museum and an event gallery are expected to open next year.