I set out to find excellent festivals after watching the two Fyre Festivals documentaries on Netflix and Hulu. I think that it’s safe to say that those of use who want to go to a festival are a little more skeptical than we were before watching. I am looking for a sense of authenticity when going to a festival, as well as a strong sense that I won’t be abandoned on a tropical island. These are my 7 Excellent Festivals That You Might Not Have heard Of.
Bring your camera. It’s going to be good.
Frozen Dead Guy Days, Nederland Colorado
One of the more quirky festivals, Frozen Dead Guy Days commemorates Bredo Morstol, who is in suspended animation deep in the Colorado Rocky Mountains. The Festival over-runs the one stoplight town of Nederland CO for three days of music, coffin racing, a polar plunge, and a frozen tee-shirt contest. The Festival commemorates life in the face of (un)death. Dress warmly, the festival will occur in March, 2020.
West Virginia Road kill Cook-off, Marlinton West Virginia
If you’ve ever passed an animal corpse on the side of the road and wondered to yourself what it takes like, well this is the festival for you. Featuring original recipes for such exotic meats as elk, deer, bear, and squirrel, the West Virginia Road Kill Cook-off has been featured on CNN, The Travel Channel, and The Discovery Channel. Experience beautiful Appalachia in late September, so bring a jacket.
VeganDale, New York, Houston, Chicago, Miami, Toronto
If you read ‘West Virginia Road Kill Cook-off, and realized that you’re never going to eat animal products again for the rest of your life, well there is a festival for that. There are actually quite a few but VeganDale is the new-comer on the up-and-up. Started in a neighborhood in Toronto, 2019 marks it’s fourth year and a major expansion across the United States. Meet fellow Vegans, experience the best of vegan cuisine, listen to music, and learn about the lifestyle. Check the website to see when in the summer season VeganDale will be at a town near you.
The Underwater Music Festival, Lower Keys Florida
The Underwater Music Festival is a small, but excellent festival held just after the 4th of July in Lower Keys Florida. The festival, which consists primarily of swimming and diving, is centered around specially made instruments made to be played under water, with participants scuba diving to play the instruments while a water microphone records the music they can’t hear. This year marks the 34th year of the festival, which makes it a Floridian tradition. Make sure your camera is waterproof!
Santa Fe International Folk Art Market, Santa Fe New Mexico
Well technically, this this more of an excellent market than a festival, but the market is a celebration of all the incredible art of the world and the artists who create such art. Having represented over 1000 artists from more than 100 countries around the world, the weekend festival features the art market, art exhibits, educational lectures, music, and food from around the world. The Santa Fe International Folk Art Market takes place in early July in Santa, Fe. Bring a jacket, the mornings can be deceptively cold in the mountains.
Bat Fest, Houston Texas
No this is not a Batman festival. Instead, it’s a chance to see the incredible namesake of the caped crusader. In Houston every year in late summer more than 1.5 million Mexican free tail bats emerge from their roosts and fly beneath Congress Bridge at dusk. This excellent festival is family friendly and featured two live stages, a bat costume contest, and vendors of arts, crafts, and foods. Bat Fest is in late August, so you’re probably okay, but bring a camera to capture this unique moment.
Denver Underground Music Showcase, Denver Colorado
Colorado should be known for more than being that weed state, an the Denver Underground Music Showcase is an excellent festival to experience the best of Colorado and Denver’s emerging music scene. For three nights every venue on Broadway opens its doors to performers, and you, the listener, get to walk up and down the street sampling music, beer, and food–the best of Colorado. At the very height of summer,late July, bring a hat and shades, because Colorado gets more than 300 days of sunshine.