Monday, July 31, 2017

Floydfest 2017

It's hard to believe Floydfest has been going on for 15 years!  We attended as venders the first few years when it was still small, but it has grown exponentially over the years. We went back a few times just as attendees, but honestly i found it too stressful with two small kids and so many people! So we rarely go.

This year i was approached by a friend in charge of the Children's Universe about volunteering. My kids are old enough now, that i'm okay leaving them at home unsupervised. Kenan is there working, but they are pretty much on their own. 

i agreed to help out at the CU on Saturday.  My job? Giant bubbles!! How fun is that?! The night before the festival, i made some new bubble wands and bought some dishsoap. 

The bubbles were a huge hit the kids (and a few of the adults). i was really impressed with how well the kids shared and took turns. i really only had a couple of kids that were not well behaved, the majority by far were very nice, polite and very well behaved. 

This little boy with the hat, was my buddy. He hung out with me almost the whole day making bubbles. When the little kids wanted to pop bubbles, he volunteered to make bubbles they could pop, so the other kids could make giant bubbles that floated away. (not everyone wanted their bubbles popped).  He was such a sweet and polite kid and a big help as well.

My official shift was from 12pm- 4pm. i got there a bit early, because i didn't know how long it would take to be shuttled in and get through the gates. It was actually very quick, they did a great job of getting folks in quickly.  So i worked (making bubbles) from 11:30 until almost 5pm. i started parking up around 4pm, but the kids kept coming back to make more bubbles, and they were so much fun i couldn't say no. So we continued until i ran out of bubble soap. 

As in Floydfest tradition it rained. It sprinkled a few times in the afternoon, but cleared up. Then a storm rolled in later in the day, and decided to stick around.  It started with just dark ominous clouds,  the rain didn't come until later.  It gave me a chance to explore the festival. 

This is the first time i've been to a big musical festival completely alone. In the past, i've always gone with a friend or my husband. i figured i'd run into local folks i knew and would have a chance to hang with someone, but i never did. It was just me alone and i loved it. i loved every minute of it. :) i felt as if i had an invisibility cloak on. 

i wandered all around the festival grounds. i checked out the food and checked out the vendors. i caught part of the Xavier Rudd set at the main stage and then put down a blanket and enjoyed the entire Rising Appalachia show.  

i spent a little time just hanging out. i can not tell you how nice it was to not have to worry about anyone but myself. i did what ever i wanted. Watched whatever show i wanted. Wandered when i wanted, sat down when i wanted. It was awesome. 

Floydfest had a butterfly theme this year, so they brought in a butterfly dome from Butterfly Dome Experience. i admit, i had some mixed feelings about this. As someone who raises monarchs small scale, i know how fragile they are. There seemed to be no rules within the dome and little children were  picking them up by their wings, pulling caterpillars off of the butterfly weed etc. Many of the butterflies were unable to fly, and i'm quite certain several of them looked infected with OE.  They were planning to release the butterflies on Monday, so that makes it especially concerning. 

i spent some time just sitting and observing the butterflies, but after watching a little girl drop and almost step on a tiny caterpillar repeatedly. i had to leave. The butterfly dome was a nice idea, but for someone who raises monarchs (small scale) it was also pretty cringe worthy. 

i had a great time watching Railroad Earth. They played a great show and i couldn't help but dance! i was right up front, dancing with everyone else. It was so much fun and a very needed release. 

After the Railroad earth set, i wandered around a big checking out the other stages. i briefly watched a sword swallower, but couldn't keep watching. Eek. i went over to the Hill Hollar stage and saw a bit of Tauk.   That's when the rain started. It wasn't a light sprinkle that felt like it would pass. It poured, and it was cold. i was really hoping to stay for the Mountain Jam that started at 10:15pm. It was about 10:08 when the rained really got going.  i figured i'd walk back to the shuttle and if the rain stopped before i got there i'd go back to the main stage for the show, if it was still raining i'd get on the shuttle and go home.

When i got to the shuttles it was still pouring, so i hoped on and headed back to my car.  My biggest stresser about going to the festival alone, was the fear that i wouldn't be able to find my car in the dark after the show. Somehow i totally lucked out and ended up parked almost right under the main light in the center of the parking lot. i had absolutely no problem finding my car, but slipped in the mud just a few feet from my car and went down hard. i had mud everywhere. After such a great evening i couldn't believe that's how i ended it!! 

i really did have a fantastic time, and i'm really hoping to come back next year as the official bubble lady.  :) Although as an introvert, i can only handle about one day. :) The energy is intense! If you've never been to Floydfest, check it out! It's truly an experience you don't want to miss. 


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