Welcome to the Cornerstone 2002 Report!

I love Cornerstone. This was my third pilgrimage to that sacred place, and I enjoy it more every year. On my first trip to that Christian Mecca back in '98, I spent nearly all my time at the HM Magazine tent. Last year I was all over the place. This year I actually got some seminars in and spent about half of my concert-going time at the Silent Planet Records' Acoustic Tent and the other half at the Gallery Stage. Who knows what next year will bring?

This was my first solo trip. Many people were surprised that I'd go alone, but even though you GO alone, you rarely stay that way. Cornerstone is a great place to meet people. You can see pictures of some of my new friends if you follow my hangout links.

I carried a notebook with me everywhere I went so that I could record my thoughts and later pass them on to you. I also carried a camera and took eight rolls of pictures. I hope you enjoy them!

You can read my day-by-day account, or you can visit a specific artist/speaker/hangout on the left.

As a weird aside, God helped me read the book of Ezekiel in a totally different way. I didn't have the chance to record that here, and it wouldn't really fit anyway. Maybe I'll add it to my homepage sometime.

Joanna's Guide to a Great Cornerstone Experience

While a great time at Cornerstone CAN just spontaneously happen, it's more likely to happen if you follow some of these guidelines.

  1. Plan ahead so you can arrive one or two days before Tooth & Nail Day. It gets really difficult to find a good camping spot after then. If you don't want to camp, bring an RV, stay in a dorm room at the local college, or get a hotel room.
  2. Bring a golf cart and/or a bicycle and a fold-up camping chair. (I got a great chair at Wal-Mart for under $5.) Also bring a battery-operated fan, flashlight, and bottled water everywhere you go.
  3. If you're going to camp, find a shady spot. Tents can get really, really hot! Don't camp on a hill or at the bottom of a hill if you can help it. Rain => runoff => wet
  4. Don't camp near a high-traffic area or a stage unless you don't want any sleep. It will be loud.
  5. Shortly before you leave, visit www.CornerstoneFestival.com and download the seminar and artist schedules. Sometimes last minute changes are made, and the schedule you download will be more up-to-date than the booklet you will be handed at the door.
  6. Make out your schedule for the week the first day or two you're there, before the main events start. A schedule will help you make sure that you don't accidentally miss something you really want to go to.
  7. Drink LOTS and LOTS of water and avoid soda pop. That is, unless you WANT to get sick. I averaged a gallon of water a day.
  8. Eat some nuts or jerky or something with salt in it once in a while. You lose a lot of salt through your sweat, and your body needs to replace it.
  9. If you take your shower at night before you go to bed, the line will be short (or non-existent) and you will cool off and be able to sleep better. Also, wear pants and shoes in-between the shower and your tent. Otherwise dust and dirt will be attracted to your freshly cleaned, slightly damp skin, and you will be nearly as dirty once you get back to camp as you were before your shower!
  10. Lightweight cotton pants (not jeans!) and real shoes work better than jean shorts and sandals. Really. They keep the dust & dirt off you (so you won't feel as nasty) and you will be able to walk better. The pants will also soak up the sweat. It sounds gross, but it helps.
  11. Always lock the door after entering a Johnny-On-The-Spot.
  12. Bring a small bottle of hand sanitizer with you everywhere you go, and use it every time you leave a Johnny-On-The-Spot.
  13. Bring Wet Ones to periodically wipe the sweat & dust off your face. It will help keep you from breaking out.
  14. Arrive a little early to every event you want to attend in order to get a good spot.
  15. Check out the Press Tent. Sometimes they don't let fans inside, but you can still get the opportunity to see your favorite artist up-close if you stand around outside. You may even be able to snag a picture or autograph.
  16. If you store food in your tent, keep it covered and in airtight containers if possible. You don't want to be overrun with ants.
  17. Put on sunblock BEFORE you burn at the beginning of each day. Reapply it a few hours later.
  18. Wear a hat. A hat with a wide brim is best—it'll keep the sun out of your eyes and you'll be less likely to get sunburn.

You Don't Have to Break the Bank to Get to Bushnell

This year I went to Cornerstone on a shoe-string budget. I spent about $40 on gas, $150 on supplies, $85 on my ticket, and only $115 on merchandise. A fairly cheap vacation, I must say. Most Cornerstone pilgrims I know will say, "Only $115 on merch?!" But I got some cool stuff for that:

4 CD's:

  • Between Thieves "Live"
  • Bill Mallonee "Fetal Position"
  • Various "Aliens and Strangers: A Compilation From Silent Planet Records"
  • Various "Making God Smile: An Artists' Tribute to the Songs of Beach Boy Brian Wilson"

2 DVD's:

  • Cornerstone 2001 Scrapbook
  • Swirling Eddies' "Spittle and Phlegm"

2 T-shirts:

  • Bill Mallonee and the Trophy Wives
  • Cornerstone 2002

2 Buttons:

  • Cornerstone 2002
  • Eden Z Films

1 Poster:

  • Worldwide: The Life & Music of Gene Eugene Andrusco

I also picked up a Daniel's Window sticker somebody dropped on the road near my tent. Not bad for $115, eh?

Groovin' in the Glory of God,

Joanna Ruth Wirtz

This Cornerstone 2002 Report is brought to you by:

Be sure to visit Joanna's homepage
for yummy goodies!