September 27, 2012

Weekend of grinnin' and pickin' starts today

Weekend of grinnin' and pickin' starts today


---- — MORRISONVILLE — The first-ever Plattsburgh Bluegrass Festival has a promising beginning. 

The weather is predicted to be cooperative, and all 97 electrical hookups at the Clinton County Fairgrounds are sold out. Dry camping is still an option.

“We still have room for a couple hundred more,” said Glenn Gillespie, fair manager. “They are all coming in on Thursday morning.

“It’s our very first year. We’re excited about it. By the looks of it, it will be a huge success. I would estimate about 1,000 people (will attend). We got our campers here. That’s 200 or more. Our day-rate people, I don’t know how many of those will come.”

The Jesse Alexander Band takes the stage at 1 p.m. Friday. The musical rotation includes Dave Nichols & Spare Change, Remington Ryde and Danny Paisley and the Southern Grass. There’s a dinner break from 5 to 6 p.m. before the entertainers take the stage for a second set.

Saturday’s lineup is Cabin Fever, Dave Nichols & Spare Change, Remington Ryde and the Gibson Brothers.

Gillespie said he was lucky to have Ryan Frankhouser of Remington Ryde act as festival promoter.

“He’s been after me to do this Bluegrass Festival, and some local people have been after me,” Gillespie said. “He will be my emcee for the whole weekend. He’s got all these good bands, including the Gibson Brothers. They’re just coming off a tour in Nashville this week. They’re driving up there and will come right to our fair from there.” 

Gillespie told Frankhouser he couldn’t have a bluegrass festival without the Gibson Brothers.

“They are right in our backyard,” he said.

The festival is expected to become an annual event.

On Sunday, there is no cost to attend the day’s festivities, which start at 9 a.m. and include more bluegrass.

“Anyone can come in Sunday morning. Father (Scott) Seymour is coming for Mass. The whole neighborhood is welcome,” he said.

The grandstand seats 2,200.

“We have a track in front of the stage. People will bring their chairs and line them on the track. There will be food vendors. The therapeutic donkeys will be here. They will be walking ‘round,” he said.

The festival comes on the tires of the Adirondack Tractor Pull.

During the Bluegrass Festival, field pickin’ is encouraged round the clock.

“The thing I like about it, they can go from camper to camper,” Gillespie said. “People bring their guitars, fiddles and mandolins. They can go from camper to camper and hear people play some good music. We encourage that all night long, not just during the day.” 

Gillespie will have his guitar in tow.

“I look forward to playing with all these people. It will be a fun weekend.”

Email Robin Caudell:

IF YOU GO WHAT: Plattsburgh Bluegrass Festival. WHEN: Today through Sunday. WHERE: Clinton County Fairgrounds, 84 Fairgrounds Road, Morrisonville. ADMISSION: A three-day pass costs $50. Children 12 and under admitted free when accompanied by a parent. Day ticket prices: $10 Thursday, $20 Friday, $25 Saturday, and free Sunday. Day-ticket holders must be off fairgrounds by midnight each night (price does not include camping). Camping is an additional $25 per night. The gates open at 8 a.m. today with camping on a first-come, first-serve basis. Generators are welcome. Dogs are welcome with appropriate shot papers. All dogs much be on a leash and at owner's camping site only. CONTACT: For questions, call 561-7998. BLUEGRASS AWARDS The Gibson Brothers is up for four titles at tonight's International Bluegrass Music Association Awards at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, and fans can watch the show online. The band has been nominated for Entertainer of the Year, Vocal Group of the Year, Gospel Recorded Performance of the Year and Recorded Event of the Year. They will also perform live at the awards show. Find the Bluegrass Today live webcast, beginning at 7:45 p.m., at As well, the show will be aired on Sirius XM's Bluegrass Junction or can be heard online at