Date: July 20th-22nd
Location: Dover, DE
Size: 18,000 a day
Price: $218 + fees.
Years Running: 1st ever
Crowd: The crowd for Firefly was simply wonderful. It was a more mature crowd than I am used to from the other festivals I have been attending mainly because of the indie rock lineup. Everyone was super nice and making friends just found a way of happening. I found my crew on the first day and didn’t let them go from there.
Music: The bands were great at Firefly. They all seemed excited to be there and were on time. The highlights were Yeasayer, Girl Talk, Jack White, The Killers (weird), and The Head And The Heart. One thing I did not approve of is there were quite a few bands that ended earlier than the lineup said they would. Not cool.
Organization: This was a well run music festival especially considering it was a first time festival. There were plenty of bathrooms, no lines to get in, no noise pollution from one stage to the next, and the crowd size was perfect. I was also impressed with the extras that Firefly brought to the table like having Dog Fish Head brewery create a Firefly Ale just for the festival. They even had hot air balloons you could ride on. Well done.
Stages: The stages at Firefly were kind of boring. When Firefly labeled themselves as “The Premier Festival On The East Coast” I was expecting something a little more unique than cookie cutter stages. The main stage was well done for the headliner each night but other than that the stages were just stages. At least the sound was good. Once again, this was their first festival so they should be able to take it to the next level next year.
Landscape: The landscape at Firefly was your typical straw-like festival grass. It’s great for what we do there. It sucks up the moisture if it rains and is comfy enough to sit on. A blanket it always recommended though.
Food: The food at Firefly was good but it wasn’t a dining experience like the Firefly website wanted you to believe. My dining highlight was the pizza booth in the camp ground. The custom crafted Firefly Ale was absolutely delicious though. I can’t stress how cool of an idea this was.
What makes this festival special? I think this festival is special because of the combination of the forest setting, the great lineup, and the overall vibe of the festival. It was a really great place to see music with all of the new friends you made.
What could be improved? Now that they have their first festival out of the way they can crank the awesome up to 11 with better stages and more advanced lighting/decoration. They tried to do a cool forest light installation but I don’t think they gave this project the budget it required. I also had a real issue with the lightning during the Black Keys show. All of the lights around the sides were on and I found it very distracting. They also need to keep this festival going later. Why did it end at 11pm? Ohh, and there were no firefly’s either. WTF?
Overall Rating: 3.5 stars. This is a great rating for a first time festival. It would be a 4 if the festival played later and can go up even higher once they commit to improving the stages and lighting. I really loved this festival and would recommend it to anyone that likes the lineup. See you next year.