By Timothy Dwenger
Planet Bluegrass Ranch – Lyons, Colo.
Set in the beautiful town of Lyons, Colo., this festival is the perfect compliment to a summer afternoon. Along the St. Vrain River, Planet Bluegrass Ranch is an oasis nestled among the majestic red rock formations that dominate the Lyons landscape. The Festival, now in its 18th year, brings together some of the most recognized names in the folk world with some bright new up-and-comers.
The folk genre is broad and the organizers are more than willing to push the boundaries of the genre when booking acts. Rest assured that there will be a healthy dose of old favorites, but if you are a music lover who can’t wait to find a new act to sink your teeth into, you won’t be disappointed. Like Planet Bluegrass’s marquee festival in Telluride, the on-site camping may be close quarters but it fosters new friendships, jam sessions and more than a few good laughs. For those who shy away from big crowds, the relatively low capacity of the Ranch allows this to be one of the most intimate feeling festivals around.
(As calculated by mapquest.com from
Denver, Colo. to Lyons, Colo.)
Total Est. Time: 55 minutes
Total Est. Distance: 49 miles
ALONG THE WAY: In Lyons, the Planet Bluegrass Ranch reigns supreme, but just down the road is Oskar Blues, THE music venue of Lyons. With a flare for blues and cajun, Oskar Blues is a great after-festival spot, before the camp-side picks get going. The venue always has special guests on festival weekends, and it’s never known who from RockyGrass’ main stage will show up at the club, post-festival.