The summer of 1969 was a time of change. It was the year of the Beatles swansong, the first manned moon landing, and hippies protested with the establishment over U.S. involvement in Vietnam. On a dairy farm in the town of Bethel in upper state New York, the greatest musical and cultural event of the millenium happened. The Woodstock Music & Arts Fair was held during the weekend of August 15th through the 17th. People referred to it as "three days of peace & music". Starring thirty top names in popular entertainment, the Woodstock Festival's attendance was unexpected for the time.
Futhermore,the Woodstock Music and Art Fair drew more than 450,000 people. For four days,.
this site became a "countercultural mini-nation" in which drugs were all but legal, music was plenty, and love was free. The festival closed the New York State Thruway and created one of the nation's worst traffic jams.The music began Friday afternoon at 5:07 p.m. August 15, with the guitar playing of Richie Havens. The sticky-sweet smell of burning marijuana wafted into the open windows of the house's in Bethel that night. Eventually, artist such as Tim harden, Joan Buez, Bert Sommer, and Sweetwater performed that night. Woodstock was the idea of four young men: John Roberts, Joel Rosenman, Artie Kornfeld and Michael Lang. Their original idea was to have it in Wallkill, New York, but the residents objected that idea, that the site was then brought to a farm about eight miles outside of Bethel, N.Y. .
However, Woodstock had some problems. Drugs were a major problem at the festival, nearly ninety percent of the people there were smoking marijuana. Approximately one hundred percent of the 33 people arrested were charged with drug-related charges. In addition to this, food shortage was a problem, since so many people showed up who the festival organizers wree not prepared for. Only 60,000 people were expected to attend, yet on the first day alone, 500,000 hot-dogs and hamburgers were consumed.