Celebrate dad with bluegrass at the Father’s Day Festival in Grass Valley
June 13, 2018
The California Bluegrass Association presents its 43rd annual Fathers' Day Festival Thursday through Sunday at the Nevada County Fairgrounds in Grass Valley.
As in years past, this year's event features a lineup of top touring bluegrass bands and five of California's best bluegrass and old-time music groups. The festival offers four days of entertainment on three stages plus nonstop jam sessions by music-playing fans on the camping areas.
Among the major bands that will be appearing are: The Del McCoury Band, Balsam Range, Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper, The Grascals, Valerie Smith and Liberty Pike, Edgar Loudermilk featuring Jeff Autry, Molly Tuttle (2018 Emerging Artist), Thompsonia, Bluegrass Etc. and Dave Stamey, and The Possum Trot String Band.
Also, five West Coast bands will appear on the main stage this year as the California Showcase. These bands are: AJ Lee and Blue Summit, The All Girl Boys, Windy Hill, Honeysuckle Possums, and The Blues Js.
In addition to the main stage, there are two other stages (The Pioneer Stage and Verne's Stage) that will feature even more bluegrass!
Every year, the fairgrounds at Grass Valley begins filling up with tents and RVs on the Sunday before the festival begins. Many are there for a three-day music instructional camp that runs through Wednesday, but most just arrive early to play music, hang out with old friends and meet new ones.
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Tents dominate the camping grounds under the pines, and RVs and campers create an aluminum and steel village around the rest of the grounds. Dozens of volunteers spend the week prior to the festival erecting the big main stage and preparing the two smaller stages.
On Wednesday, the festival's vendors arrive, setting up booths in the food area to offer coffee, sausages, Asian food, vegetarian fare, Mexican food, crepes, and very popular snow cones and ice cream. There are also booths with vendors of hats, apparel, jewelry, crafts and musical instruments and supplies.
Inside of the fairground buildings is a luthiers' pavilion, where they display beautiful handmade guitars, banjos, mandolins, fiddles, and basses. They also offer instrument setup and repair services. Lots of folks just hand out there to "talk shop"!
Don't forget: The California Bluegrass Association Father's Day Festival is a family-friendly event. For children learning to play an instrument, the "Kids on Bluegrass" program works up songs beginning on Thursday and performs on the main stage Friday and Saturday — a big thrill for the kids and the audience.
For more information or tickets, visit http://www.fathersdayfestival.com.
Source: The California Bluegrass Association.