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Favorite ThisWakarusa (Interstellar Meltdown) Festival Preview

Published: May 16, 2010

By: Cole Epley

Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival – June 3-6, 2010

Mulberry Mountain near Ozark, Arkansas

Win 2 FREE Tickets to Wakarusa Festival

Boasting one of the most diverse, face-melting lineups over four days is this summer’s Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival at Mulberry Mountain, Ozark, Arkansas. Wakarusa will celebrate its seventh consecutive year (its second at this location) and once again delivers an eclectic lineup which touches on songwriters, New Orleans jazz, world-renowned DJs, livetronica acts, dub/ska and nearly everything in between. Save this date: Wakarusa kicks off on Thursday, June 3 and will conclude on Sunday, June 6.


With the incorporation of the much-anticipated Interstellar Meltdown (sub) festival, Wakarusa promises to impart an electronic experience unlike any other to be found on this continent. Of course, indispensable electro-maestros STS9, Disco Biscuits and Bassnectar will be in attendance at this year’s Waka festivities—however, make it a point to spend as much time as your happy feet can handle at the Outpost and Satellite Stages, where nearly 50 separate artists and DJs will convene to blast festival-goers into interstellar overdrive via two late-night stages. The out-of-this-world lineup for this year features EOTO making their fourth consecutive Waka appearance, as well as Big Gigantic, BoomBox, Lotus, Dubtribe Sound System and James Zabiela—and that’s just at the Outpost Stage. Program your frontal lobe to heat-seeking mode and roll on over to the Satellite Stage to groove to the likes of Mark Farina, Mimosa, Kraak & Smaak, Spacemen and Bluetech. Keep in mind all this is within the realm of Interstellar Meltdown’s ‘festival-within-a-festival.’ Interstellar Meltdown is presented by Cicada Rhythm, beatnik and Grassroots.


Tickets: The final tier of Full Event Passes is on sale now at the Waka website for $159. Weekender Event Passes are available for $119, as are Saturday Event Passes for $59. Keep in mind that you must have purchased a Camping Pass if you wish to camp at Wakarusa.

Camping: Wakarusa offers both primitive and water/electric supplied campsites. RVs are allowed into the site but RV passes have sold out. You may choose to park your car at the campsite (camping passes are sold separately from event passes and range from $79 to $29). Each car entering Wakarusa MUST have a camping pass which will cover up to four campers per vehicle. Hotel lodging information is available on the Wakarusa homepage.

Stages & Vendors: This year’s Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival offers five stages of music: Main, Revival, Backwoods, Outpost and Satellite. Check or to find out more about when and who will be performing at which location. Numerous arts, craft & food vendors will be located throughout the site where you will find a wide selection of crafts, memorabilia and a diverse selection of fairly priced food. Each vendor is required to pass state health requirements before they may open; also, they are required to be open in the Main Stage area from 12 noon to 1 a.m., in the Midway from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. and in the Revival Village from 12 noon to 4 a.m. Vendors in the Midway and Revival area may operate 24 hours if they so desire.

Facilities: Free access to potable water is available on site. Organizers will also provide showers and bathrooms; a general store is located on-site which will sell essentials such as batteries, soap/shampoo, ice and soft drinks. ATMs are located throughout the site and festival goers will have 24/7 access to EMT assistance and locksmith service. Security will also be on patrol at all times to ensure a safe, fun and considerate festival experience. Attendees are allowed to bring in their own food and drink to the campsites but kegs are discouraged. Open fires will not be permitted—all fires must be contained within a small grill.

Activities: Aside from the obvious music facet of the festival, organizers have integrated a number of fan-friendly endeavors for all to enjoy. These include Silent Discos and a bon fire each night after the stages shut down. Haven’t heard of a Silent Disco? Imagine two live DJs, either of whom you listen to is your choice via a personal headset (supplied by organizers.) Get your groove on deep into the night and follow this trend which, according to organizers, is borrowed from our trans-Atlantic friends in the Euro festival and rave scene. Friday night features a festival-wide costume contest and you may kick each morning off, if you so choose, with a yoga session at the Outpost tent. The Ozark Highlands Hiking Trail features splendid views of waterfalls, and outdoor enthusiasts may fish, float or kayak from the Mulberry River.

Natural Surroundings: Nestled snugly into the heart of ArkansasOzark National Forest, Mulberry Mountain contains 650 plush acres of forested oak and hickory landscape. Ozark National Forest is also home to over 500 species of trees and wooded plants and the Ozark Highlands Trail, regarded as one of the most beautiful hiking trails in the country. The drive in and out of Mulberry Mountain navigates the Pig Trail National Scenic Byway which will offer festival-goers astonishing views of Ozark beauty on their ways in and out of Waka.

Sustainability: Festival organizers have placed 200 color-coded recycling bins throughout the entire festival grounds in an effort to thwart waste, littering and pollution. Waka attendees are encouraged to bring in reusable plastic bottles in which they will be able to store and drink free potable water. Campers will be provided, upon entry, with two large bags: one for recycling and one for garbage. Recycling from aluminum cans will benefit local non-profit organizations. And via the utilization of Renewable Energy Credits, the web server for Interstellar Meltdown is 130% green-powered!

Social Awareness: Once again, Wakarusa organizers have teamed up with the wonderful people at Conscious Alliance, a social activism alliance driven to distribute food to needy communities and to educate the public about hunger and social issues affecting Native American communities. You may not recognize the program, but you’ll certainly notice Conscious Alliance teammates such as STS9, Bassnectar, EOTO and The Glitch Mob, to name just a few. Visit the “Art That Feeds” gallery on the festival grounds to get more information about the mission of Conscious Alliance. Also, with the donation of 10 non-perishable food items, festival-goers will receive a limited-edition Wakarusa poster, a creation of Rob Marx. R.Marx has notably created album art and tour posters for artists including Umphrey’s McGee, Railroad Earth, STS9 and String Cheese.


Untz Featured Genres: breaks, dubstep, electro, livetronica, drum & bass, downtempo, house and trance.



Widespread Panic
Umphrey's McGee
The Disco Biscuits
The Black Keys
Slightly Stoopid
John Butler Trio
Blues Traveler
Dweezil Zappa Plays Zappa
Robert Randolph and the Family Band
Railroad Earth
The Machine performs Pink Floyd
7 Walkers feat Papa Mali and Bill Kreutzmann
State Radio
Tea Leaf Green
Black Joe Lewis
Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk
Dub Tribe Soundsystem
James Zabiela
Mark Farina
Todd Snider
Split Lip Rayfield
The Mother Hips
Hayes Carll
Tortured Soul
Sub Swara
Stephen Kellogg & the Sixers
Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band
Trampled by Turtles
Future Rock
Kraak & Smaak
Two Fresh
Big Gigantic
Truth & Salvage Co.
Pimps of Joytime
Pete Francis
That One Guy
Ekoostik Hookah
Fort Knox Five
Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band
Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad
Mountain Sprout
Great American Taxi
Band of Heathens
Last Waltz Ensemble
Cash'd Out
The Constellations
Earl Greyhound
LYNX & Janover
Jay Nash
Backyard Tire Fire
The Bridge
Big Smith (Gospel Grass Set)
Shannon McNally & Hot Sauce
The Heavy Pets
Spoonfed Tribe
Sunshine Jones
The Uglysuit
Truckstop Honeymoon
Ben Miller Band
Matthew Mayfield
Wes Kirkpatrick
Hoots & Hellmouth
Deadman Flats
Resident Anti-Hero
Radiohiro and MC Zulu

Tags: Drum and BassLivetronicaBreaksDubstepGlitchTrapElectroHouseDowntempoHip Hop