Yonder Mountain String Band Get By With A Little Help From Their Friends at the Harvest Music Festival
Words and pictures by Bradley Darby
In a world flooded by music festivals priding themselves on having a diverse lineup that will attract fans of all genres, Yonder Mountain String Bands Harvest Music Festival stands apart. Entering its second year with the Yonder Mountain taking over the main billing, the Harvest Festival features some of the best bluegrass and folk acts out there today as well as one of the premiere festival sites in the country, Mulberry Mountain.
Taking place October 13-16 in Ozark, Arkansas (about an hour from Fayetteville) this year the incredible lineup is led by Bela Fleck & The Flecktones, Railroad Earth, 7 Walkers feat. Papa Mali and Bill Kreutzmann, Emmitt-Nershi Band, Trampled by Turtles, Todd Snider as well as Harvest regulars Cornmeal, Mountain Sprout, and Split Lip Rayfield. In addition to their friends, your festival hosts the Yonder Mountain String Band will play 3 sets, and if the 2010 fest is any indication you will find them popping up all over guesting with other bands throughout the weekend. Music is scheduled to go until 3A.M. most nights with late night sets featuring Speakeasy, Split Lip Rayfield, and and of course Dirtfoot, who played a set that lasted until 5 A.M. last year and are scheduled for two more late night sets this year.
The Harvest Festival is a family friendly event as well, with The Roost area offering a Kidz Kamp, Hooping Lessons, Tye Dye lessons, and glass blowing classes as well as Yoga sessions each morning. This year will also mark the First Annual Fiddlin’ and Pickin’ Contest, where contestants will compete in four competitions – Mandolin, Banjo, Flat Picking, and Fiddle – with winners of each receiving cash prizes. On Friday make sure to stop by the Chompdown, a free communal breakfast put on by festi-folks for festi-folks taking place in the RV Reserved campground at 9A.M. featuring a morning set by Dirtfoot…. the Chompdown is always one of the highlights of the weekend. Bring some bacon and eggs, or just bring yourself and meet some new friends while filling your belly. Check out the video below for a better idea of what the Chompdown really is.
But Mulberry Mountain offers so much more than just great music and people….. you can arrange a float trip on the gorgeous Mulberry River, or take one of the many trail heads off of Highway 23 for a scenic hike in the beautiful rolling hills of Northwestern Arkansas. Don’t forget about the waterfall located near the festival grounds, a popular site for many patrons.
Though the event is capped at only 7500 people, making it one of the more intimate festivals out there, tickets can still be purchased online or possibly at a local retailer near you to save some fees. Check www.yonderharvestfestival.com for ticketing info and last minute changes. Don’t forget to check back here at the end of October for a full recap and photo gallery!
- Full Band Lineup and Schedule
- Harvest Festival Message Boards (Great place for all your heady festi info)
- Harvest FAQ