Thursday, October 11, 2012

Newell Lodge Bluegrass Festival - Oct. 25-27 - Preview

The Newell Lodge Fall Festival will run from October 26 -27 headlined by Nothin' Fancy and Still House on Saturday. Tucked into Southeastern Georgia's piney woods just north of Jacksonville, Newell Lodge has been developed by promoter Harvin Carter as an ideal getaway for weddings, equine activities, and bluegrass festivals. Set in a beautiful grove of live oak trees and featuring a well-designed stage as well as tasty, wholesome home cooked food, and comfortable, permanent facilities, the Lodge is a gem hidden in the woods.  Assisted by Robert Wilson and featuring sound by Clint Wilson, this small festival in late October is an ideal stop-off for Snobirds heading to Florida or for people hungry for a good festival during a slow time of year.

The Venue

The Newell Lodge site is built on a small live oak covered hammock in the midst of piney woods. Owner Harvin Carter has built a complex of small rental cottages, a lovely gazebo that serves well for jamming or weddings, corrals for equine activities, and a first-rate performance stage. The grounds are dotted with a fetching collection of buggies. Buggy rides and trail rides are part of the Lodge's offerings. Camping facilities include plenty of water/electric sites and full bathrooms dotted around the grounds, including free hot showers. This facility can hardly be beat as a venue for first rate bluegrass festivals as well as many other events.

 The Stage

Full Service Restaurant
Plenty of Camping

The Bands
Nothin' Fancy

Nothin' Fancy is a well-respected band featuring originals songs as well as much humor in their songs and patter. Lead singer and chief writer Mike Andes is strong and fiddler Chris Sexton is one of the best for straight fiddling and musical wit. The band has a large and well-deserved fan base. The recent retirement of Gary Faris on guitar has opened a space at guitar, now filled by the able Justin Tomlin. This is a very enjoyable band.

Mike Andes & Tony Shorter

 Chris Sexton

Breaking Grass

Breaking Grass is a young Mississippi-based bluegrass band that was our surprise band of the just completed IBMA World of Bluegrass in Nashville. Fronted by the very personable Cody Farrar, the band is energetic, and their music is driving bluegrass leavened with some new sounds reflecting their musical influences.  Farrar contributes much of the original work. This band is new on the horizon and deserves watching. 

Cody Farrar

Highway 41 South

Highway 41 South has become a favorite in Florida with its good interpretations of classic bluegrass and country hits. They have opened for a number of major touring bluegrass bands at Mixon's Grove near Bradenton and are featured performers at many Florida bluegrass festivals. They have been a regular feature at Newell Lodge also.

Mark Horn

Still House

Still House is another young and exciting band brought together from the band which provided the drive for Carrie Hassler for several years. With the recent addition of Chris Harris on mandolin, the band has improved itself.  Look for driving and exciting bluegrass music. 

Keith (or is it Kevin) MacKinnon

Kevin (or is it Keith) MacKinnon

Chris Harris
The Wilson Family Band

A regional favorite and host band at Newell Lodge, the Wilsons can be counted on for strong singing and songwriting as well as fervant, and well chosen, gospel music. Kalyn Wilson will be the new bassist and singer.

 Katie Wilson

Mr. & Mrs. Clint Wilson (Kalyn)

Cheryl Watson & Watertown

The Thomas Family


How to Get to Newell Lodge

Your Hosts
Harvin Carter

Robert Wilson

Kay Carter

Ashley Carter

Irby Brown - Emcee

Clint Wilson - Sound
See you there!