One of the most iconic photos of the 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Fair isn’t of a musician, but rather a 1963 Volkswagen Microbus affectionately called Light. With its mystic symbols and psychedelic paint scheme, it became the ultimate representation of the event that defined a generation; but 50-years later, no one knows where it is. In celebration of the upcoming 50th anniversary of Woodstock, Discovery takes viewers on the search for the iconic missing camper van and chronicles its resurrection in THE WOODSTOCK BUS, premiering Thursday, Aug. 15 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT exclusively on Discovery.
A trailer for THE WOODSTOCK BUS is available here.
Artist, educator, and activist Robert “Dr. Bob” Hieronimus originally designed and painted the bus for the Baltimore-based band Light. He painted it with symbols he believed would usher in the dawn of a new age, and his friends from Light drove the bus to Woodstock to deliver the message. The Light bus was photographed by the world’s media covering the event, with images appearing in Rolling Stone and LIFE magazines, as well as newspapers around the world. The extensive coverage made the Light bus an iconic image of the famous festival, the 1960s, and the hippie counterculture that defined the decade. But in the 50 years since, the bus – and the message it carried – have been lost.
THE WOODSTOCK BUS follows the filmmakers as they join forces with friends and automotive experts to solve the mystery of what happened to the Light bus, one of the most valuable pieces of American automotive art ever created. With the help of Dr. Bob, the crew races across America’s highways, back roads, and junkyards to find a bus, restore it, and recreate the artwork in time to take it back to the site of the original Woodstock to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the festival. Travelling from #VanLife subculture to the high stakes world of classic automobile investing, THE WOODSTOCK BUS is a journey to get the lost symbol of a generation back on the road and into the light.
The documentary premiere coincides with the official start of the Light bus’s journey back to Woodstock. Starting in Baltimore, Md., the city where the original bus was painted, it will then travel “back to the garden” for the 50th anniversary of Woodstock, Aug. 15-18. Anticipated guests, in addition to Dr. Bob, include commune members who were the co-owners of the original bus after it returned from Woodstock and original band members of Light.