Friday, September 22, 2023

Fortune at Bonnaroo: Tarot card readings in Outeroo


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By Kaleigh Young 

MTSU Seigenthaler News Service 

In the Outeroo of Bonnaroo (outside of the festival’s large communal center) there is a place called The Rest Stop. 

The Rest Stop is a far walk but well worth it for those who believe the future is in the cards, tarot cards, that is. From 10 3 p.m. each day, Taylor Balkissoon of Wild Waves and Astrology Tarot Readings can be found inside a blue gazebo offering festival-goers a peek into what’s coming after Bonnaroo ends… or an explanation of what came before. 

Tarot is a deck of cards used by a fortune teller to give someone reassurance in their past, present, or future. The reading is quite simple at first. Balkissoon asks what answers you want to find. She shuffles the deck as you talk and when you’re almost done she has the deck laid out in front of you.

It is important to note that the cards have many different meanings and if they are placed upside down it sometimes can mean bad luck depending on the card family. In tarot, there are four suits, Wands, Cups, Swords, and Pentacles (or Coins). Cups and Pentacles are fortunate cards whereas Wands and Swords are about challenges coming your way. 

Balkissoon, a tall brunette with curly hair and a passion for overalls, has been practicing tarot for roughly five years. Her interest sparked during the pandemic and she learned about different variations and styles of how to read someone future. She has been studying astrology for over 10 years. 

The common connection between astrology and tarot are zodiac signs (astrological signs determined by your birthday) represented in the major arcana cards (22 cards that capture universal human experiences, like challenging authority, falling in love, and even unexpected lousy news). 

When giving readings, Balkissoon hopes “people to walk away with a sense of empowerment and greater self-awareness, I also really enjoy the diversity of experiences and questions and learning more about people and how they heal.” 

Parker Kongisle, who road-tripped to Manchester from Minnetonka, Minnesota, sought answers for her newfound anxiety. The 20-year-old said she was interested in tarot to focus on learning herself more. 

“I have started to get into it a bit the last few years, turning to it especially when I’m feeling anxious or stuck. From my experience, every reading I encountered has always aligned with what was vital to me. I started to practice myself a few months ago and it blows my mind how accurate things are and how the cards give a very accurate blueprint.” After the reading, Kongisle aspired to “take a deep breath” and “essentially balance out my energies. and I’m consciously working on doing so right now.” 

Keleigh Breener, who traveled to Tennessee from Fargo, North Dakota, found herself looking for reassurance for a tarot reading she had done on her own. After Taylor’s reading, Breener sought to “carry out the energy that I am alright and everything works out exactly how it needs to.”

Kaleigh Young is a staff writer for MTSU Sidelines.

To contact News Editor Kailee Shores and Assistant News Editor Alyssa Williams, email

For more news, visit, or follow us on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines or on Twitter and Instagram at @mtsusidelines.

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