Review: Governors Ball 2019 Music Festival, Randalls Island, New York City

By Paul Riegler on 3 June 2019
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Set in the middle of New York City’s East River on Randall’s Island, the three-day Governors Ball music fest offers a wide-ranging mix of music and culinary delights that will appeal to all.

Bold colors and patterns dominated not only the landscape with the colorful Governors Ball sign Hollywood style up on a hilltop and lots of rainbow flags, but were also in evidence in the crowds: festival goers were festooned in colorful attire and striking black-and-white outfits with mix-and-match the order of the day, no matter how outrageous. Most festivalgoers avoided high heels, however, due to muddy conditions from heavy rains right before GovBall opened.

The first Governors Ball was held on June 18, 2011, on Governors Island, which is in New York Harbor and served as a military outpost for almost 200 years starting in 1776. The inaugural Governors Ball was headlined by Girl Talk, Pretty Lights, and Empire of the Sun. Starting in 2012, the festival was held on Randalls Island, which offers over 400 acres (162 hectares) of parkland and the event expanded to two days and featured Beck, Passion Pit, Kid Cudi, and Modest Mouse as the headliners.


This year’s Governors Ball features a mix of bands that ranges from rock to indie to hip-hop and includes Tyler, the Creator; the Strokes; and Nas as headline performers with a total of 68 bands all together.

Saturday had a particularly festive feel as it was the first day of World Pride month and the afternoon largely featured female-fronted groups including Suzy Wu and Kacey Musgraves, and the return of Florence + the Machine, who played at the festival in 2015, as a headliner.

But the culinary delights that awaited festivalgoers were equally as exciting. For those unsure whether it was breakfast or lunchtime, the Doughnuttery and the Nugget Spot partnered on a Doughnug Slider, three mini doughnuts with a tasty chicken nut in the middle.

Click here to continue to Page 2Unicorns and Waffles

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