THE YEAR OF DISCOVERY - SUMMERLAND BLUE GRASS FESTIVAL

We took in our first blue grass festival this year. It was the Summerland Blue Grass Festival in Summerland, BC.

This was just a great weekend with some awesome entertainment and the price makes it one of the most affordable weekends we have ever done. The people were extra friendly and most of the participants were there in RV's.

 

The festival this year was in June on the 12-14th at the Summerland Rodeo grounds. They make it extremely easy to find with signs from all the major intersections along Hwy 97 through Summerland to the grounds.

It was a special year for the festival as they were doing a tribute to the founder of the Summerland Bluegrass Festival.

Click on the logo at the left to visit there site ... 

 

Lawrence Trudeau discovered Bluegrass music when he first attended a jam at Juliette Spear’s in Penticton. He was “bit by the bluegrass bug”  as they would say, and it was full steam ahead.

He drove for many miles just so he could attend festivals and Jams.  He found his true passion in life!  The love for the music and people set him on a path that would allow him to infuse a little bit of Bluegrass into everyone.  He was dedicated to his dream and wanted only to share his newly found ” True Love”

An invitational get-together was heldat the Glen Mcquirter farm in Summerland.  It was so successful that a group got together which included, Gary and Barb Grimm,  Roseanne Oliver and Lawrence, they decided to put on a campout at the Summerland Rodeo Grounds in 1996.

He continued the yearly campout from then on, he became the expert and spirit of Bluegrass festivals and forged on with his vision.

He was awarded a plaque from the British Columbia Bluegrass Association for his huge amount of effort he put forth to promote Bluegrass in the area.

In 2001 he formed a committee to ensure the festival would continue on,  even without him. He was voted President of the board and held that position proudly.

He passed away in 2004 at the age of 79, his quiet leadership will always be remembered. He gave freely of himself with a winning smile, he was the very essence of our Bluegrass family.

Tribute from the Summerland Bluegrass website


 

 

 


The festival venue is right across the road from the world famous Kettle Valley Steam Train.

This is the only restored section of the Kettle Valley railroad that has beautiful scenery along a ten mile section of track with spectacular views of land and lake with the 238 foot high Trout Creek Bridge.

The locomotive is a restored 1912 steam "3716"

On the weekends they have the great train robbery where a band of horse riding bandits, stop the train and rob passengers of their change. (Of course the money goes to a good cause)

Click on the picture to visit their website ...  

 

 

When we arrived at the festival on Friday night we pulled into the grounds and there was no one at the tent, which we assumed was to pay for the weekend.

So we pulled out into the area where we saw a lot of RV'ers and set up for the weekend.

Then we went to the stage area and the info booth and were told to enjoy the show and we could pay tomorrow.

Now that is the honour system and a friendly way to introduce people to Bluegrass.


 

 



To say the least, we really enjoyed the entertainment on Friday night and then went to bed for the night.

The weather was just awesome. Not too hot and not too cool.

Here is the info booth where we went to get the schedule and all the info on the festival.

The people are all volunteers and are super friendly and helpful.

 




Saturday afternoon we enjoyed the bluegrass bands from all across the country and the entertainment was non stop all afternoon.

They started at 10 AM and went until 8PM at night and then for the night owls they had a jam session that went on until the last person left.

So to say the least we did not make last man standing.

We had a seat right behind the sound man and he did a great job.

From morning until night he made the bands sound good. 

 

 

On Saturday the headliner for the festival was the Bix Mix Boys.

They are one of Canada's hottest bluegrass bands that did excellent music and a very entertaining stage show.

Click on the picture to visit their site ...

 


Food was in abundance while we were at the festival and that saved going back to the motor home and missing the entertainment.

The food was provided by Greg' rs Gourmet and he put out some really good burgers, ribs and lots of other dishes.


RV parking was great and definitely not crowded and the common courtesy was to leave room between the units.

Even around the RV's the music was happening as bands practiced for their performances on stage later in the day.

The whole weekend Friday to Sunday cost only $50 for two of us and that included camping and all the entertainment including the headliner.

Now where else can you find that kind of a deal?

 Our home at the festival

 Was not crowded