Kearns and Sons RS Aesthetics

Oldtime Bluegrass Festival scheduled for Saturday

The Ruby Jewel Band from Anaconda is one of the many groups that will be playing at the Oldtime Bluegrass Festival this Saturday at Lone Rock School.

By Jean Schurman

For 18 years, one of the harbingers of spring has been the Montana Rockies Bluegrass Association’s Oldtime Bluegrass Festival and Fundraiser. This year will be no different. The 19th annual Old-time Bluegrass Festival will be this Saturday, April 14, from noon to 8:30 p.m. at Lone Rock School northeast of Stevensville.

“It’s the first spring blowout,” said organizer Mike Conroy of Darby.

The festival provides funding for the association’s newsletter and is the only donor for the Hardtimes Bluegrass Festival held the last weekend in July just south of Hamilton. Conroy said there are also some potlucks, campouts, jams and hootenannies throughout the summer too.

The event will start off with the Kids in Bluegrass performers. Most of these are students of Conroy and in many cases, this is their first live performance. After that, each band plays for 30 minutes and each band plays for free. Other bands playing are: Bluegrass 101, Bittergrass String Band, Darby Sireens, Tin Cup, Flatgrass, Hogleg Slough Band, Mike & Tari Conroy Band, Skookemchuck Bear Claws, Pinegrass, Spring Thaw, Elk Ridge Ramblers, Salmon Valley String Band, Acousticals, Silver Gravelys, Chet Rudyard & Friends, Ruby Jewel Band, Add Hawk Bluegrass. The bands are from Western Montana and Idaho.

“We’re dang proud to have every band,” said Conroy. “They range from inexperienced to long time performers.”

In addition to good bluegrass there will also be good food. Conroy said they have cooked up about 100 pounds of turkey and will have “turkey sandwiches, turkey soup, turkey everything.” People are also encouraged to bring a dessert that will be offered for sale as well.

The Oldtime Bluegrass Festival will be at the Lone Rock School which is located at 1112 Three Mile Creek Road, northeast of Stevensville. The school is located 5.5 miles northeast of Stevensville, east off Eastside Highway and then three miles up Three Mile Creek Road. Admission is $5 for non-members and $3 for MRBA members. Children under 12 are free.

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