Folks Festival starts its second decade
By Timothy Dwenger
Planet Bluegrass Ranch
Set just a few minutes walk up the road from the beautiful town of Lyons, Colo., this festival is the perfect compliment to a summer afternoon.
Planet Bluegrass Ranch is an oasis nestled among the majestic red rock formations that dominate the Lyons landscape. Bring along the kids, swimsuits and some towels, as the gentle St. Vrain River runs right through the festival grounds and festivarians can lounge in the cool river waters to escape the hot sun.
The Rocky Mountain Folks Festival, which is celebrating its 20th year with a star-studded lineup, brings together some of the most recognized names in the folk world with some bright new up-and-comers. The organizers at Planet Bluegrass are more than willing to push the boundaries of the genre when booking acts at their marquee festival in Telluride, and rest assured that Folks Fest will have a similarly adventurous lineup. There are a healthy dose of old favorites on the bill, 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 the on-site camping in Telluride, quarters are often close but are sure to foster new friendships, jam sessions and more than a few good laughs. For those who are intimated by the big crowds at many festivals, the relatively low capacity of the Ranch allows this to be one of the most intimate feeling festivals around.
(As calculated by maps.google.com from Denver, Colo. to Lyons, Colo.)
Total Est. Time: 52 minutes
Total Est. Distance: 42 miles
YOU NEED TO KNOW: Preceding the Folks Festival is the week-long Song School, for songwriters. Keep an eye on the website leading up to the festival itself as, inevitably, some of the break-out students end up being the buzz to catch and often last-minute sets get added to accommodate those folks, at the festival and at other venues around town.
Camping: Both on-site and off-site camping is available, but very limited.