As the Planet Bluegrass family prepares to sit down for our annual feast, we've given some thought to our Thanksgiving toast. It will be long. It will be filled with the music that drove us to dance (Solomon Burke) and smile (Hot Rize) and sing (Stephen Kellogg & the Sixers) and cry (The Swell Season). It will reflect on the transformations we witnessed at Song School and the Academy. It will recall the double rainbow that warmed us during Folks Fest; the full moon that lit is up in Telluride. And it will be personal.
For as we stare out over our fine tarp-covered table - spanning from Lyons to Telluride to California to Ireland - it is the love and friendship of the festivarian community that we are most thankful for. Your spirit provides deep meaning in what we do; and we are humbly thankful for the time we share together.
After the toast we'll clink glasses, stare into the mashed potatoes, and eventually someone will ask the inevitable November question: so, what about next summer's lineups? While we're not quite ready for our big announcement, here are a couple morsels to get things flowing...
Del McCoury will be singing on the RockyGrass (July 24-26) stage once again. He'll share the Lyons stage with Danny Paisley & The Southern Grass and Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper. What? You're not familiar with those two gritty bluegrass bands. Oh man, you're in for a treat that'll eclipse that pumpkin pie in the next room.
In August, we're welcoming back Brett Dennen and Dougie MacLean to the 19th Annual Folks Festival (August 14-16). While the rest of the year we'll be presenting more shows in our Wildflower Pavilion as we finish the work in making this into a four-season music venue.
If you're a regular in the RockyGrass on-site campground (or have dreamt of those legendary late-night jam circles), there's no need to wait two more weeks. The online lottery for on-site camping and vehicle passes is open now thru December 7 at 11:59pm MST. Find the secure online lottery form at bluegrass.com.
The lotteries for Telluride Town Park and RockyGrass Academy closed last week with record numbers of entries for both. If your Town Park name wasn't drawn, take heart: numerous Telluride camping options, including nearby Warner Field, go on sale on December 10. While most of the RockyGrass Academy classes were filled through the lottery, we will also have several Academy spaces available starting December 10, including bass and clawhammer banjo.
Included in our Thanksgiving toast is the joy that this year we heard Darrell Scott perform "Colorado" both in Telluride and in our Wildflower Pavilion. Our good friend Darrell Scott still has some spaces left in a new songwriting retreat he is hosting this December with Mary Gauthier and percussionist Kenny Malone. This unique week-long experience will be held at a yoga retreat, 5,000 feet above sea-level in Costa Rica. For songwriters, this promises to be a spectacular way to ring in 2009. Learn more...
The elves in the Festivarian Mercantile are busy putting together a special line of holiday festivarian gear. Check back at shop.bluegrass.com in a couple weeks for our seasonal offerings for the festivarian in your life. Or go ahead and order one of our stainless steel "sustainable festivation" water bottles right now.
Remember, festival tickets go on sale a week later than past years - Wednesday, December 10. Savor this time with friends and family; we'll have lots of exciting news to share after the holiday.