So - The greatest show ever turned 25 this week! So we thought it was the perfect timing for us to show you our shenanigans from last month’s Friendsfest adventures! It’s something we’ve wanted to do since Friendsfest began, but timing/ticket sellouts/general being a grownup meaning we’re never able to get our friends together in one place (something that Friends led us to believe was always going to be super easy!) always got in the way in previous years. However, the fact that our favourite show ever turns 25 this year (& at least I was only 4 when it began, which means I’m not THAT old - however this is the year when we all turn 30, except youthful Dan - who’s still a prime 28) meant that it was now or never & we’re SO glad we did it...
P.S. We took over 500 photos on the day. How we’ve managed to condense it, I really don’t know - but trust us - you could spend a whole day there! We were there a good 5 hours & in all honesty I think we probably would have lived the rest of our lives there...
The One With The Outdoor Stuff:
So once we got there, after countless renditions of the theme tune in the car, (with obvious perfectly timed group clappy-bit efforts) we approached several street signs pointing us in the right direction. These were ‘proper’ road signs - clearly the Council (much like ourselves) knew how big a deal this was & that our quote-filled lives had been leading up to this moment. (Man there really is a Friends gif/quote/meme applicable to every life situation).
We decided on the Bristol venue due to the timing, but there are 4 Friendfest destinations: Manchester, Bristol, Milton Keynes & London, & the whole thing runs between August & September, moving along to each destination. Each of the dates sells out quickly, but in all honesty we waited less than 5 minutes for every photo op (which we weren’t intending to do! - but when you’re surrounded by Friends shirts, Hugsy Bedtime Penguin Pals & the opportunity to PIVOT! it’s a case of when in Rome!)…
CENTRAL PERK! LOOK AT THAT TILL! It was bizarre to see this.. it was like we’d already been there - which I had. Because I was back singing there on that particular day. When it wasn’t me - they had actually scheduled a ‘tribute’ act to sing while you waited for your photo ops on the famous sofa! There was even a ‘Reserved’ sign, which I don’t know if you notice - but is always there in every episode - THAT’S HOW THEY ALWAYS GET THE SEATS!
Seriously, my Glastonbury.
So we did the outdoor stuff first - This is how Friends should be watched! I’m confident we would have gone to this thing even if it was just clips on a big screen. God I love it. Ha! It was amazing to be surrounded by so many Friends fans. It was such a lovely atmosphere & we were so glad that the place wasn’t filled to capacity. The only thing timed is your set tour, which takes place inside one of the constructions, so those are staggered, but you can go into the festival part whenever & for however long you like! The sun was shining all day which made the perfect excuse for Friends-themed cocktails, & you know I LOVE A THEME! We’ve added photos of what we ate down below, but we decided to do every. single. photo op. first.
So the big Central Perk bit was made up of the half that included the sofa photo op, & the half with the real coffee for sale! People sat in there all day as this was more shady than the outdoor screen seating.. It was hot! But my pasty face braved it all day! Instead of including a sofa photo of us, I opted for the laptop. Look. at. it. Cute!
Obviously we did the frame - not only was there this giant dream of a prop, but you could also have your floating heads photographed in the prop door next to it, as well as having your picture taken by the real door - yeah, I’m choosing to believe it! The staff were on hand at all of the photo ops, & they took the photos with your phone - so no getting stitched up & having to wait in line at an overpriced photo kiosk for your cringey cheesy grin to appear in front of everybody - ha!
The staff were brilliant on the day. Our PIVOT! girl in particular was great - she even positioned us to get the best photo (clearly her experience of putting up with obsessives had come into good use!)
The One With The Props
This was the bit I was most looking forward to (for obvious reasons!) It even edged out slightly on the food, mmmkay - maybe not, ha! Here there were tons of items from the show - The Holiday candy sign from when Monica sells candy to her neighbours, the Brown Bird Thin Mints from the episode where Ross breaks the little girls’ leg - (er what?!) & the roller skates that Chandler nearly breaks a hip with!
The One With The Set Tour
Ahh. NO WORDS NEEDED!
...but we weren’t sure why we all felt the need to crouch by the door. Ha!
..and obviously the one where we did the thing. (& stole Hugsy)
AND WE SAW THE APOTHECARY TABLE!
The One With The Food
Look at these cocktails! I bloody love a theme & I’m an easy sell. The perfect customer.
Food options were amazing! The Joey special was a thing, & involved what can only be described as a pizza sandwich; there was a Pheobe section with loads of yummy veggie food; a Janice hot dog stand (should have been called Oh. My Dog. - just an idea for next year guys, you can have that one!) - but OMG. Mama’s Little Bakery Cheesecake (Chicago, Illinois) - that was the best. I 100% would have eaten it off the floor.
The One With All The Merch
Actual Packaging Disclaimer: The Mockolate was chocolate, & we weren’t asked if we had any allergies! The merch was brilliant! There were some fab, good quality items made exclusively for the event & although we weren’t overwhelmed with choice (which was nice!) we did find ourselves going into the shop several times throughout the day! Caroline got some treats for her Birthday - which went well with her ridiculously on-point 30th Birthday frame!
The Wedding Chapel was a super popular photo op - for most of these you were given props. It was amazing watching people come together in a joint wedding dress photo, scrambling to get their wigs on in time! It was clear that a lot of thought had gone into this event & we truly had THE best time. It’s a must for any fan!
Could we have BEEN anymore excited?! Thank you Friendsfest for being our superfan enablers for the day!
Caroline - we’re 30 this year.. looks up & yells I thought we had a deal.
The Festive Friendsfest takes place for the first time this year on selected dates in London! Check out the link here if you fancy it!
P.S - Hugsy was knackered by the time we got home!