Golden Gate Estates woman recalls Woodstock on its 50th anniversary

In the summer of 1969, a three-day concert changed the world. Thursday marks the 50th anniversary of Woodstock.

As she strums her guitar, you may be inclined to call Carlene Thissen sentimental about her time at Woodstock. But that is an understatement. Thissen said it was the best three days she has ever spent, with people that were just like her.

“I would take weeks off the end of my life to do it again,” Thissen said. “It was that amazing.”

She was a 19-year-old who said her world was about to change. From protests over Vietnam to fighting for civil rights, for more than 400,000 people, the concert became something soothing for the soul.

Thissen told WINK News she quit college after Woodstock. She eventually went back to get her degree and got a ‘real job’ in the corporate world.

But Thissen never forgot the magic, the peace and love. She penned the words to a song, which was an ode to her folk-singing roots and her passion for the moment that will live in history.

“I think it was just a moment in time, you know that just happened,” Thissen said. “I almost think of it like Brigadoon… It came, you know what I mean and then and then left.”

We asked Thissen why there has never been another Woodstock. Thissen said one reason is because of cell phones. In 1969, there were no distractions. People were forced to be present and were able to escape reality.

Thissen hung onto her momentos from Woodstock, including her outfit, jewelry and original tickets. She and her husband also headed back for the 25th anniversary and now she’s headed back for the 50th anniversary.

“There’s like a spirit that is there,” Thissen said. “That kind of amazing peacefulness and people just loving each other. It was just wonderful. I expect to feel that again.”

Reporter:Lindsey Sablan
Writer:Michael Mora
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