Have Car, Will Travel: Six Oregon Music Festivals Within Six Hours
We are lucky living in the Rogue Valley whether we know it or not. Portland is less than a five hour drive away and in between are some towns that are hosting some of the most exciting music festivals on the west coast. That means if you are willing to hit the road this summer you can hear some great music. And some of it might be closer than you think.
Melomane in Medford
Kick off this summer on June 24 at the Melomane Music Festival in Medford. There are half a dozen bands playing, including the influential groove-metal band Helmet, and what better place to hear music than in Pear Blossom Park. Melomane is a non-profit and proceeds will be used to help fund K-12 grade music programs in Southern Oregon; so you can support a good cause and have fun at the same time. Check out the full line-up and purchase tickets ($21.69) at the website: melomanemusicfestival.org.
Wildwoods Music Festival in Willamina
If you like bluegrass music, but don’t enjoy being packed in like a sardine, then it’s time to head to the Wildwood Music Festival, in Willamina Oregon, July 21 – 23. There are over a dozen bands playing including Hillstomp, Matt Woods, and The Hooten Hollers just to name a few. Tickets are $90.67, camping is $11.54 and kids under twelve are free, but must purchase a camping ticket. There is plenty of room for camping and RV’s so you can dig in like an Alabama tick and really let your hair down.
Northwest World Reggae Festival in Hood River
If you want to hear some reggae/roots music this summer you don’t have to go to California for Reggae On The River or The Sierra Nevada Music Festival. Head upstate to the Northwest World Reggae Festival July 28th -30th near beautiful Hood River, 13 miles east of Sandy. There are camping sites “in the fields and in the trees” and the Sandy River is right there if you want to take a dip. There is more than a handful of bands and this year’s festival features legendary singjays Sister Carol and Pato Banton. Early bird tickets are $120 and kids 14 and under are free; kids age 15-17 are half price with an adult. Camping is $10, small RV’s are $40 and large RV’s (over 25 ft.) are $75.
Project Pabst in Portland
Do you want to see big-name acts complete with corporate sponsorship? Then head to the Project Pabst Music Fest Northwest in Portland on August 26th and 27th. Saturday’s line-up features Iggy Pop, Die Antwoord, and Father John Misty. Sunday’s show features Beck, Nas, and Spoon; it is hard to go wrong with that many legendary acts on the bill. Tickets are sold separately for each day and range from $55 – $99 per day; music starts at 1pm and goes until 10 pm on Saturday and Sunday. There is no camping, so book a room, or ask a friend to save some space for you on their couch.
Fairieworlds in North Plains
Do you like dressing up like a faerie and listening to music with other people that are dressed like faeries? Then I know the perfect place to go; Faerieworlds, in North Plains August 25 – 27. Faerieworlds features world music, neo-folk and pagan-folk groups and is the largest festival of it’s kind in North America; so fly your freak-flag as high as you want. This year’s line-up features Omnia, Euzen, Martine Kraft, and Woodland to name a few; and more bands will be announced in the next couple months. Camping tickets start at $170 for adults, $80 for kids age 6-12, and include admission to the show. Non-camping tickets start at $125 for adults and $60 for kids age 6-12. Ticket prices do not include parking, which is $30 for the weekend or $15 per day.
Freedom in the Forest in Cave Junction
It’s September now and summer is practically over so why not enjoy some music right here in our own backyard. The 5th annual Freedom in the Forest Festival is happening at the Country Hills Resort in Cave Junction on September 1– 4 and has plenty of entertainment for everyone. This year is featuring 90s underground legends Green Jelly (formerly Green Jell-O), American Sideshow, The Mentors and over a dozen more bands. There is fun for the whole family and after-hours fun for adults as well, but no dogs are allowed this year. Tickets are around $100 for the whole weekend and include camping which is “first come first serve.” More information can be found on their website: freedomintheforest.com.