MerleFest, offering the feel of both music festival and family reunion, drew nearly 76,000 fans to North Wilkesboro, North Carolina during April 25-28, 2013. Beginning in 1988 as a tribute to the life of Merle Watson, this year’s event also served as a celebration of the lives of Merle’s parents, “Doc” and Rosa Lee, who passed away in 2012.
At MerleFest, the glass, red plastic cup, coffee mug or Mason jar is always half full. Making sure the glass stays half full, the presenters of MerleFest provide music industry award winning performers as well as musicians with the skills to win the hearts of fans, generation after generation.
Preparations are well underway for MerleFest 2013, presented by Lowe’s, which officially begins next Thursday, April 25, and runs through Sunday, April 28, on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina.As in years past, fans at MerleFest can expect the unexpected with special surprises, spontaneous jam sessions and one-of-a-kind musical collaborations, with over 90 performers playing on 14 stages during the four-day festival.However, for the first time in its 26 years, MerleFest will take place without beloved
Louis Molinary is convinced that the Stones wouldn’t really care if he wasn’t able to make his mortgage next month. The fifty-something real estate developer from Charleston, SC is quick-stepping into the festival alongside me, headed back to the picking tents. He tells me he’s new to bluegrass music and wants to hear some more, he said.. Until last year, when a longtime friend finally convinced him to come, Molinary had been more of a fan of The Rolling Stones, and Led Zeppelin.
As the last notes of music rang out over the hillside and crews began dismantling stages, preliminary estimates showed that over the festival's four days more than 70,000 music fans filled the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro for MerleFest 2009, presented by Lowe's. The weather in western North Carolina felt more like summer than spring, with sunny days and high temperatures in the '80s. One storm blew through on Friday evening, delaying some of the performances for just a few minutes.
The clock is ticking down the hours and minutes to MerleFest 2009, presented by Lowe's, which will begin its 22nd year of "Music, Moments and Memories" next Thursday, April 23, and wind up on Sunday, April 26, on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina.
I arrived in the small town of Wilkesboro, North Carolina on Saturday morning. Wilkesboro is not the type of town you really notice or generally have any cause to stop in. In some many ways the town's 10,000 or so residents probably prefer it that way, you don't live in this kind of town if you like hearing your neighbor's TV at night. But last weekend was a weekend that you did want to pull off the highway, because just a few miles off the highway the country's top bluegrass and folk talents gathered to an adoring crowd