Welcome to another great year!

By Dyno Wahl
Reader Contributor

If you are reading this in the Reader today, I hope you will join me at the Festival tonight!

Each August the Festival at Sandpoint welcomes world-class performers to our special venue on the shores of Lake Pend Oreille. We win them over with our relaxed, waterfront setting and the friendly embrace they receive from the Sandpoint community. It’s no wonder music critics and industry insiders have dubbed us “The Best Fest in the West.” Artists love to play here and it shows!

Dyno Wahl.

Dyno Wahl.

We are celebrating 34 years of eclectic music under the stars on the lake. This year’s line-up includes popular artists Bruce Hornsby, Railroad Earth, Emmylou Harris, Angelique Kidjo, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Ben Harper. We also present a Grand Finale with the Spokane Symphony with virtuosic soloists, including a world premier piano piece by Vadim Neselovskyi. I am also passionate about using our platform to launch emerging artists as opening acts—I challenge you not to fall in love with one or all of the following: Bridges Home, Rabbit Wilde, The Bros. Landreth, The Powers, Afrosonics, Luke Bell, Tom Freund and Sadie Wagoner.

Our venue is blessed by natural beauty and a welcoming atmosphere that sets us apart from other outdoor venues across the country. It is a customized concert experience without equal: You can enjoy fabulous food and beverages on “Festival Street” with 13 juried food vendors and two full service bars, or you can bring your own picnic basket and cooler from home—including alcohol. No kidding! You can stretch out on a blanket, cruise in a lawn chair (bring your own or rent ours), sit in the grandstands or let loose in our dancing areas. Best of all, the Festival is up close and personal. People tell us it feels as though the artists are playing in their own backyard.

This year’s Festival artwork, “The Sound of a Sandpoint Summer” by Kathryn Weisberg, imagines a symphony musician set loose after rehearsal to enjoy our town and environs. Many festival artists over the years, from Ziggy Marley to Tony Bennett, have found our community to be one of the most friendly and beautiful places they’ve ever experienced—swimming, hiking, boating, shopping, dining. Heck, ‘Keb ‘Mo even hit some garage sales!

Our festival feels different because it is different. The Festival at Sandpoint is a nonprofit organization that exists to bring the positive power of musical performance to you. We are fueled by the dedication of people who are passionate about this mission including our board of directors, staff, production crew, donors, volunteers and the fans who are the reason we are here.

It is my privilege to welcome you to the “Best Fest in the West!”

Dyno Wahl
Executive Director
The Festival at Sandpoint

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