Some Kinfolk Celebration History

Ad for 2003 Kinfolk Celebration
Ad for 2003 Kinfolk Celebration

Yonder's relationship with Planet Bluegrass began in their first year, as the young band was offered a main stage set at the 1999 RockyGrass festival shortly after forming in late 1998.

That 1999 RockyGrass set made a strong impression as the following year the band began its run on the main stage of Telluride Bluegrass, which has remained unbroken since 2000 (including numerous Telluride NightGrass performances). Yonder has returned to the RockyGrass main stage 3 times since 1999, including their infamous "TBA" slot to celebrate their 10th anniversary at the 2009 festival.

The 2014 Kinfolk Celebration marks the return of the event to its original home and the 4th Kinfolk Celebration to be held in Lyons...

2002: A Kinfolk Celebration

The first Kinfolk Celebration was held on Planet Bluegrass in 2002. This single-day event on Saturday, September 14 included camping and several bands: Single Malt Band, Open Road, and several full sets from Yonder Mountain.

"Mountain Tracks 3" CD Recorded at  2003 Kinfolk Celebration
"Mountain Tracks 3" CD Recorded at
2003 Kinfolk Celebration

2003: Kinfolk Celebration

The 2nd Kinfolk Celebration on Planet Bluegrass expanded to a 2-day event, Friday & Saturday (Sept 12-13) including camping and performances from 5 other bands.

The beloved double-CD "Mountain Tracks 3" collects highlights from Yonder's sets over the course of these 2 days in Lyons.

Friday's show started at 4pm with a set from Willy Porter, followed by Yonder Mountain. Saturday's full day of music began at noon with sets from: High on the Hog, The Wayfarers, Reeltime Travelers, String Congress (featuring Darol Anger, Brittany Haas, Heidi Andrade, Rashad Eggleston & Ben Kaufmann), and sets from Yonder Mountain.

2012: Kinfolk Celebration

"Mountain Tracks 3" CD Recorded at  2003 Kinfolk Celebration
2012 Kinfolk Celebration artwork

After 8 years away from Lyons, the 2012 Kinfolk Celebration marke the triumphant return of Yonder Mountain and the Kinfolk to their original home on the Planet Bluegrass Ranch in Lyons, CO.

This 2-day celebration, August 24-25, featured epic evening performances from Yonder Mountain (featuring special guest Andy Hall and the largest light show ever staged at the Planet Bluegrass Ranch). Afternoon performances included some magical sets from Greensky Bluegrass, Todd Snider, Split Lip Rayfield, and Larry Keel & Natural Bridge.

Adding additional excitement to the weekend was the US Pro Cycling Challenge which passed through Lyons on the Saturday afternoon of the Celebration.

Denver Post's Reverb blog wrote "the setting was perfect." Yonder Mountain's sets from both nights are available for download from yondermountainlive.com.


Have some cherished memories or photos of the early Kinfolk Celebrations in Lyons? We'd love to hear from you. Share your story on the Festivarian Forum or on Facebook.