Woodstock Music and Art Festival in 1969 was one of the most iconic events of all time, which took place on Max Yasgur’s dairy farm in Bethel, New York. Although the name of the event was Woodstock, the farm is located about 40 miles (or 65 km) southwest of Woodstock. The story of Woodstock is incredible. It was a truly once in a lifetime event that was created by a perfect storm of factors, at precisely the right time in history.
Over 400,000 people attended the event over that weekend of August 15th through 18th, of 1969, and many of these individuals had their own unique stories from the event. For example, a couple named Judy and Jerry Griffin met on their way Woodstock, and have been together ever since. The pair met after Judy’s car broke down on New York’s Tappan Zee Bridge, which is about 90 miles from the festival.
As Judy and her friends were stranded, Jerry and a group of his friends pulled over to help, and offered them a ride. Although Judy was hesitant, there was another woman in Jerry’s group, so she felt a bit safer taking the ride. One thing led to another, and the two ended up hitting it off and developing a relationship that lasted over 51 years, and resulted in two sons, and five grandchildren.
The couple told the story of how they met for years, but they didn’t have any pictures of the event, even though both of them had cameras with them. However, last summer when a friend was watching a PBS documentary commemorating the 50th anniversary of the festival called “Woodstock: Three Days that Defined a Generation,” they noticed a picture of the couple at the festval. After seeing the photo for themselves, the couple decided to recreate the picture.
The friend recognized them right away and sent them the picture. They couldnt believe that a picture had surfaced after all this time.
“For 50 years we’ve been looking for a picture of ourselves, and out of the blue one shows up. We’d known each other less than 48 hours when that was taken,” Jerry said
The couple ended up getting married in December of 1975 but they still celebrate their anniversary on the day that they met.
“We always celebrate Aug. 15th—which is also my birthday and the day we met as our anniversary,” Judy says.
In 2004 Rolling Stone magazine listed it as number 19 of the 50 Moments That Changed the History of Rock and Roll.
On March 19, 2019, the proposed line-up for Woodstock 50 was announced. This included some artists who performed at the original Woodstock festival in 1969. The event was to take place at Watkins Glen International, the race track in Watkins Glen, New York. However, the event was ultimately cancelled after investors lost faith in the event’s ability to make money. Still, the Woodstock legacy lives on through the booming global festival industry, with events going on all over the world, every weekend, that hope to replicate the magic captured by the legendary event in 1969.