If you’ve ever seen our “Upcoming Events” page, you know that we are slam packed with festivals, shows, events, and outings. While all of them are fun and we always like to have a good time wherever we go, a few of them seem to stick out and fall under our category of “epic”. These are the ones that we can safely say are worth traveling a few hundred miles (or more) for and you won’t be disappointed. At the top of that list has to be FloydFest, in Floyd, VA. SylvanSport has been going to this music, art, outdoor festival for years now with our GO trailer and have always left with great stories, new friends, and list of new bands to hunt down on iTunes.
Last year’s festival was like a scene straight out of Woodstock. Great music, tons of people, and rain…rain like never before and probably never again. The mud felt like it was sucking you in and the more you tried to fight it, the harder it pulled. I can only imagine how many Chacos and Rainbows are still buried underneath a foot of dirt. While a river formed through the campground sites, people were frantically grabbing everything they owned and running for high ground. Amidst all of the chaos, Tom (President) Dempsey, was lying down in the SylvanSport GO, reading a book, high and dry. Water was streaming underneath the GO, people were running, laughing, and yelling, and there was Tom, in this calm, idyllic scene. It was humorous and poetic at the same time.
Well, that was last year. FloydFest 13 marks its 13th anniversary and we wouldn’t miss it for the world. From July 23-27, FloydFest is offering festival goers a fully loaded 5-day stay-cation with even more opportunities to enjoy music, healing arts, the outdoors, and more, all in a pristine and intimate setting in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The weekend will boast over 100 performing artists on 10 stages, dozens of artisans, specialty craft beverages, a Healing Arts Village, panel discussions with activists and headlining artists on sustainable practices, and an extensive Children’s Universe. Attendees will find a magical experience in the brand new She-Sha Tent, a Persian-style tent installation featuring healing arts activities ranging from aerial workshops to professional massages, musical performances, and a ‘Revolution-wear’ fashion show. Lots of outdoor activities will also be available throughout the weekend, including guided hikes, the Belcher Mountain Beat Down mountain bike tour, the 2nd annual Vasque 5K Trail Race, and float trips down the Little River with On The Water.
Changes for 2014 include off-site car camping and RV parking located on flat, spacious lots with potable water, showers, and a 9am – 2am shuttle service. With the new Tent Tag system, all on-site campers are guaranteed a 15×15 camping space and shuttle service with an attached gear trailer. In addition, FloydFest has planned extensively with local farmers, garages, and area law enforcement to ensure that attendees will be safe, comfortable, and able to access transportation should a severe weather event occur.
And most importantly, the musical line-up is the boldest that we’ve seen, featuring an unprecedented melding of R&B, Blues, Reggae, Americana, and more. Check out this line-up:
Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite ~ Ms. Lauryn Hill ~ Ray LaMontagne ~ Thievery Corporation (Full Band) ~ Ziggy Marley ~ Michael Franti & Spearhead ~ Buddy Guy ~ Robert Randolph & the Family Band ~ JJ Grey & Mofro ~ Lettuce ~Carolina Chocolate Drops ~ Groundation ~Conspirator ~ Donna the Buffalo ~ Rising Appalachia ~ The Duhks ~ Campbell Brothers ~ The Lee Boys ~ HuDost ~ Hackensaw Boys ~ The London Souls ~ Ben Miller Band ~ Jonathon Boogie Long ~The Deadmen ~ Quinn Sullivan ~ 2013 On the Rise Winner: Paper Bird ~ 2013 On the Rise Winner Runner Up: Crystal Bright & the Silver Hands ~ Tauk ~ Dirty Drummer ~ Blue Mule ~ The Floorboards~ Incendio ~ Biz’Cirque ~ Appalachian Flow Arts ~ George Tortorelli-Medicine Wind ~ Jim Beckwith (Hanuman Das)~ Oakes & Smith ~ Adam Ezra Group ~ Allen Thompson Band ~ Ancient Cities ~ Antique Firearms ~ Chris Kasper ~ Cold Chocolate ~ Curtis Eller’s American Circus ~ Deer Run Drifters ~ Driftwood ~ Elonzo ~ Gabe Morales Trio ~ Grandpa’s Cough Medicine ~ Madrone ~ Major and the Monbacks ~ Maria Levitov ~ Michaela Anne ~ Mighty Joshua ~ Oak Creek Band ~ Onward, etc. ~ Proverbial ~ River Whyless ~ Run Boy Run ~ Rusty Maples ~Seth Stainback and Roosterfoot ~ Spoon Fight ~ Super Ape ~ The Dirty Beggars ~ The Get Right Band ~ The Giving Tree Band ~ The New Familiars ~ The Shack Band ~ The Southern Belles ~ Underhill Rose and more!
So, if you couldn’t tell by now, we’re pretty psyched about FloydFest 13 and can’t wait for July 23rd to get here. If you make it out there, be sure to hunt down the SylvanSport GO Trailer and say hi! We can kick back to some Michael Franti underneath some beautifully clear skies…hopefully.