Thursday, July 30, 2015

Second to Nunn

The local bluegrass festival last weekend in Surry County, NC should be considered second to none.  

Last weekend the Nunn Brothers hosted their 17th Annual Bluegrass Festival at their music park. It nestles between a small road and  a small creek. Total attendance Saturday night was probably 300, made up of families and older couples. Compare that to Telluride, Colorado's famous festival which allows 12,000 attendees per day! Not even spectacular scenery makes up for crowds that guarantee a line for every amenity. I choose the serenity of the Nunn Bros. park. 

This was local all the way, although I did see one Florida license plate. The gate keepers were the brothers' sister and her husband. From them we found out the Nunn brothers are two of ten siblings. 

The concessions were provided by a local man. The burgers were grilled as soon as you ordered them, and the sliced tomatoes were fresh from somebody's garden. Bargain ice cream and drinks were sold by the youth from Albion Baptist. I paid them half as much for my two scoops of ice cream as I had the previous week at another music venue, and the kids still made money. 

 I bet you could build a home using the festival's A-V sponsor list. The generous donors included loggers, construction companies, masonry, and heat oil. We did notice the Guns n' Roses Septic crew that last serviced our tank wasn't on the list. And there wasn't a Starbucks logo to be found.  

Brothers Arnold, who plays guitar and Alden, fiddle,  host campers and day-trippers like us. A little creek runs along the mowed meadow, and large trees provide a fair amount of shade. 

The bands play on the porch of a log cabin decked out with stars and stripes and flowers in front of the stage.

There's a dance platform set up to one side, and it was well used throughout the evening. Folks seemed to prefer the rip roaring  fast tunes. 

My favorite dancer was this little gal, who eventually shed her toddler-sized cowboy boots for bare foot dancing.

She loved to twirl and shuffle, stop and sway, most of the time all by herself. But when slim-hipped, trim Daddy got out to flatfoot, she raised her arms to be held. They waltzed awhile, then she'd wiggle to be carried in both of his arms parallel to the ground. She completely relaxed, limp as a damp neckerchief.  Her arms flopped and hair bobbed with each step. She absolutely trusted him to cradle her safely. I choked up. Oh, daddies are so important in their daughters' lives! (Bill, you were the best!) 

After well-played traditional music, including some of Alden's fiddle antics, the first part of the show ended with fireworks. They were really good--a wide variety quickly paced. Whenever a lull came, the crowd clapped thinking they were over, then there'd be more! 

Local bluegrass shows like this one ace out the big commercial shows, in my opinion. 

Thank you Nunn brothers! 

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