Northern Wyoming News - Serving the Big Horn Basin for over 100 years

By Seth Romsa
Staff Writer 

Nowoodstock music festival enters 19th year

 

August 1, 2019



TEN SLEEP – The 19th annual Nowoodstock Ten Sleep Music Festival is set to kick off Friday, Aug. 9, and run through Sunday, Aug. 11 at Vista Park in downtown Ten Sleep.

Ever since its creation in 2000, the event has exploded into a large annual event for the town of Ten Sleep.

This event brings together a wide variety of music from different genres that event coordinator Pat O’Brien strives for.

“I definitely shoot for variety,” O’Brien said. “I get bored at other concerts where all of the same five or six instruments are played in every song, and I try and keep things mixed up to keep people from being restless.”

One of the premier newcomers for the event is local area sensation Lacy Nelson who will be performing at the Washakie County Fair on Saturday, and then take her talents to the music festival next weekend to be the opening act on Friday.

Another performer that will be coming to the event will be Cary Morin, an award-winning guitar player who blends different varieties together to create a unique sound for his blues/roots style of music.

A returning group that lit up the stage last year was Prairie Wildfire, who is a female group from Buffalo that were all in high school last year but features one high school graduate this year.

The other groups that will be attending the event are Jalan Crossland, David Gerald, Sweetspot Trio, Few Miles South, Mike Hurwitz and the Aimless Drifters, and Wyatt Lowe and the Mayhem Kings.

These bands come from all walks of life across the country, and perform different types of music including; folk, blues, and a mixture of rock and roll as well as other genres.

Each group will be performing at least twice, while Nelson will perform all three days at the festival.

FUNDING AND FUTURE

Funding for Nowoodstock comes annually from sponsors of the event, as well as other means of funding for the event.

One of the primary funds for the event has been a Wyoming Arts Council Grant that was given to the festival. This grant has been awarded for eight out of the last nine years and provides about one-third of the funding for the event.

Another primary source of income that has kept the event running for so long is the pricing of tickets that allows the festival to make a profit from the weekend and allow it to continue each year.

The last bit of funding has come from sponsors around the Big Horn Basin area that allow for this to even be possible, all of these support about one-third of the festival.

Since the event was created in 2000, it has continually been run by O’Brien and he feels as if it may be close to his time to retire from hosting the event.

Having just turned 71 on July 25, O’Brien feels as if next year may be the final year of the event if he is unable to find a successor to take over the role of coordinating the event.

“When I first started the event I was 52 years old so I was not exactly a spring chicken when it started,” O’Brien said.

Just because he intends to retire does not mean that he would not be willing to help people put the event on after next year, but he is hoping that someone will help step up and learn from him next year in hopes that the Nowoodstock Festival will continue for years to come.

After a sweltering event last year, O’Brien jokingly said that he “ordered weather cooler than 100 for this year.”

Additional information regarding Nowoodstock can be found on the website Nowoodstock.com and the festival will kick off next weekend on Friday in Ten Sleep park.

 
 

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