Music. Outside. There are few things in life that go together so perfectly. And, this weekend you could be part of the fun - twangy jams, blue skies, micro-brews and family camping will all be featured at Palisade's fourth annual Bluegrass & Roots Music Festival. And, don't worry! You're not too late. Tickets and camping spots are still available all three days, today through Sunday at Riverbend Park."People get to see these amazing musicians up close and personal in a relaxed setting," co-promoter Amy Kimberly said. "It's a great festival for all ages."Headliners include Oakhurst, 18 South, and The Carolina Chocolate Drops. Each day features different types of music, too, promoters said - "Colorado Bands" will perform today, "Bluegrass Boogie" is set for Saturday, and "Old Tyme Bluegrass" will run Sunday."The Chocolate Drops are on fire right now," co-promoter Josh Behrman said.According to Palisade town administrator and bluegrass event coordinator Richard Sales, local produce (especially apricots and cherries), micro-brews, spirits and wine will be available to festival goers. Other weekend activities include bluegrass jamming classes taught by Pete Wernick, sunrise yoga Saturday at 9 a.m., and a kids tent by the playground.Telluride Bluegrass Festival, an already sold-out event held next weekend, can be too big for families, Kimberly added."(Palisade's event) is good for families who want a mellower experience, where kids have a little more freedom," Kimberly added. "You don't have to worry about losing them in big crowds."
While poor weather conditions greatly impacted festival numbers for two straight years, Sales and Kimberly both said they have high hopes for improved attendance this weekend. "This year there will be no flooding, no rain, no wind," Sales said. "We'll have blue skies and it's going to be great."Better numbers are needed this year to ensure the future of Palisade Bluegrass & Roots Music Festival, Sales noted. As a town-run event, this year's festival needs to "break even or it may not be able to continue on in future years.""We're already way ahead of last year in terms of ticket sales, and the year before," Kimberly said. "This is the biggest ticket-selling year so far."Kimberly also said she's hoping for up to 3,000 attendees."Our goal is to grow Palisade's festival," she said. "It's such an incredible venue. If you've never been to the site, it's worth it just to go for that."Other events this weekend include: An organized hike up the Palisade Rim Trail this morning, leaving from the festival entrance at Riverbend Park at 9:30 a.m.; and Palisade's Sunday Farmers' Market, kicking off Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Main and Third.Festival tickets are available online, at the festival grounds, or at the town office. Kids 12 & under are free. Dogs are not allowed at the festival or in the campgrounds. For more information, visit www.palisademusic.com.