Due to threatening tropical storms, the original date for the festival in September was cancelled and the event was rescheduled for October 5. Rain came again yesterday, and although the festival went on as planned, the 45-degree temperature left many patrons huddling close together, smoking and drinking lots of beer and whiskey.
The unique festival setting of the concert provided a wonderful experience -- with patrons being able to float back and forth from outdoor to indoor stages -- and provided a welcome comfort in the chilly, damp weather. All the musicians performing did a fantastic job powering through their sets, and not one disappointed the crowd. When Del McCoury took the stage he joked, "Someone left the back door open, it's cold up here!" McCoury has a wonderful stage presence, and he kept the crowd excited throughout the night, providing a wonderfully organic set that was developed primarily with requests from the audience. It was great to see such enthusiasm for all the bands and music being played, with the crowd smiling from ear to ear and singing and dancing along to each band.
Regrettably I was not able to stay for the big finale of the night, named "Bluegrass Ball," which was a combination of the Travelin' McCoury's and special guests Billy Nershi and Michael Kang of the String Cheese Incident, who played well into the morning hours.
All photos by Caroline Philippone.