Summer is absolutely chocked full of musical opportunities from local hotspots to national festivals that fans trek miles to. There is literally something for everyone. One festival that I think everyone should know about and at least attend once is located in Colorado and it’s an acoustic music bonanza for an entire weekend.
Down in Lyons, Colorado from July 27-29 festivarians from all over descend into a wonderful little nook of red rocked beauty and transform it into a temporary town dedicated to bluegrass. The name of this magical place… the Rocky Grass Bluegrass Festival. This festival has everything that you would want from a festival and more.
Let’s first address the setting, the place in Lyons, CO where this festival is held is picturesque. The back drop is composed of red rock cliffs and right near the festival grounds runs the St. Vrain river, where, if you get a bit too hot during the day you are welcome to hop in and float down stream.
The contests are also an awesome attraction to this festival. If you want to see players at the top of their game showing their skills this is a wonderful place to do it. They have contests in nearly every category: flatpicking guitar, banjo, mandolin, fiddle, banjo, dobro, and even band contests. Talk about a one stop shop to get inspired and see some of todays top players.
You can even learn at this festival. For the week leading up to the actual festival there is an event called the Rocky Grass Academy. Here you can learn on your given instrument from some incredibly talented teachers and join in on the band scramble on one of the last days of the academy. Also, the learning isn’t just limited to playing, if you want to learn to build an instrument that is an option as well… talk about a major guitar geek opportunity!!!
Last but certainly not least, one of the things that will make your guitar geek ears perk up is the lineup that this festival boasts. Holy smokes, talk about catching the best acts in bluegrass in one beautiful spot. The lineup of this festival from year to year is one that never disappoints. You can catch classic bluegrass greats all the way on through new and upcoming bands. My recommendation is to stake out your seat in the lawn and get comfy because you will be in for a weekend of inspiring and amazing music!!!
Even if you can’t make it to Rocky Grass this year it should absolutely be on your bluegrass bucket list. There is so much to do, so much to see, and a bunch of stellar music to hear. I attended this festival back in 2011 and it still remains on my list of awesome musical experiences. I want to encourage you to have an awesome musical experience there as well!!!
Rocky Grass Bluegrass Festival Links