This won't be as much a music festival, as a "community" festival. All our small communities are falling apart. There is not enough money to fix roads, the swimming pools are closing, and grocery stores are shutting down. All the small towns are falling apart, while Sioux Falls is coming alive with great culture, especially the music and arts.
I'm wanting to do this annual Community & Arts Festival to try and show how if we as a community come together as a whole, rather than individual towns, we could ALL do well.
This festival will be WAY out of the box. I'm trying to eliminate the words "line up," "main stage, " "ringers/rock stars" and create an all-inclusive acoustic festival along our beautiful Vermillion River campground. Rather than stages--and musicians playing on stage, they will just be wandering the campground. There will be sponsored camps spread around our campground (i.e., Camp Whitewall, Camp Sioux River Folk Fest, Camp Rhythm of the River, Camp Book Coop, etc.).
I'd like to be clear why I'm not doing stages, and what to expect from this festival. Every cent will go toward paying musicians and toward the Montrose city, pool, park, and campground, as well as next year's festival. We're encouraging you to come with your family and bring a tent, camp chairs, and acoustic instrument if you play.
There will be booths and art to wander around and get your bearings. Other than a Saturday ticketed event in Legion Hall, all the musicians will be walking around playing Camps. So even if you're not a musician, set up some extra chairs at your camp. Name your camp with a sign, "Camp [your home town]" and invite anyone with an instrument to stop n play.
Family, Friends, and Community are our priority! We want this festival to be as much about visiting and spending time with friends and family as music.
Each camp will have a circle of chairs. If there's an empty chair and you play, sit down and play. Each camp has only two rules: (1) One song at a time (2) Clockwise. So everyone gets to play. There will also be old vintage flatbed pickups scattered around the festival grounds open to ANYone. If you play and one is empty, jump up 'n' play. If you can draw a crowd, we'll pay you next year.
Mixed into the art booths, we'll have some busking stations set up for anyone to sit down and play for tips. Again, draw a crowd, and we'll pay you next year.
Please help spread the word. This will be a grassroots production, so we're not advertising much either. We will count on all y'all visiting and spreading the word. I've been meeting face-to-face with sponsors and musicians and the local music community, trying to build this festival looking folks in the eye.
I'm doing my best to find a way to use the musicians in town, as well as my maintenance business to make them their sponsorship money back. We're building this event on an equal exchange of energy. If you play or have a neighbor, relative, or friend that plays an acoustic anything... bring it!!! You're the line up. (No radios or drum circles--acoustic only)