Burton – Traditional music – bluegrass, old-time, blues, folk, polka and more – will be the centerpiece of a day-long festival on Saturday, Aug. 18 in the Geauga County village of Burton.
The Raccoon County Music Festival, which runs from noon to 8 p.m. in downtown Burton, will feature performances on four stages, a fiddle contest, square dancing, children’s songs and games, clogging and spontaneous jamming. There will be food for sale at the festival, but event-goers are also permitted to bring their own meals as well as chairs and blankets.
Admission is $10 for those ages 13 and older; $4 for children ages 6-12; and free for children under 6.
The festival will be held at the Geauga County Historical Society’s Century Village Museum, 14653 East Park St., Burton. Historical village buildings and the Crossroads museum store will be open. The event is co-sponsored by the historical society and Western Reserve Land Conservancy, a nonprofit headquartered in Geauga County.
The Raccoon County Music Festival brings excellent local and regional musicians together for one day of traditional American music. What distinguishes all of the festival performers is that each has dedicated himself or herself for years to learning and expanding the tradition.
Performers this year will include The Family Dog (folk and rock), Austin “Walkin’ Cane” (Blues), Roger Cooper Stringband (old-time and swing fiddle), Pitch the Peat (Irish), The Stoney River Band (bluegrass), Chardon Polka Band (polka), Bobby and Karl Smakula (old-time), Young & Blue Bluegrass Band (bluegrass), Hot Djang (gypsy jazz), Wallace Coleman (Chess era blues) and Sacred Harp (traditional Appalachian singing).
In addition, there will be a fiddle contest, square dancing with caller Lynn Frederick and the house old-time players, children’s songs and games, open mic and clogging workshops with Laura Lewis Kovac and Charlie Burton. Festival-goers are also encouraged to become part of the show by spontaneously jamming – starting a jam and playing all day.
About the festival name: It comes from the name of the host county, Geauga, which is said to be derived from the word “sheauga,” a Native American word meaning “raccoon.”
About the festival’s history: Raccoon County Music Festival was a yearly event from 1977 until 1989. Thereafter the festival was held intermittently until finally it stopped running after 1999. In 2006, the festival was revived as a celebration of the Geauga County Bicentennial.
For up-to-date information on the event schedule, visit www.raccooncountymusicfestival.com or the festival’s Facebook page.