Local band “Lucid” will be among the more than 20 acts performing at this year’s Backwoods Pondfest in Peru. Lucid will play both nights at the two-day festival next weekend.
Backwoods Pondfest is back and better than ever.
The annual music festival is marking its fifth year and is doing it by adding more bands to its lineup and adding a second stage to the venue, said Chris Boire, one of the event’s organizers.
“We are so excited this year,” said Boire. “We say it every year, but we keep upping the band budget and increasing the talent. There is not one band that I want to miss on either stage.”
The two-day music festival — Friday, Sept. 9, and Saturday, Sept. 10 at Twins Pond Campsite — will consist of more than 20 bands from across the region and beyond, said Boire. Bands include Dumpstaphunk, Chali 2na, Rubblebucket, Spiritual Rez, Ulu, Kung Fu, Hot Day at the Zoo, Twiddle, Thunder Body, Gordon Stone, Bearquarium, Capital Zen, Ikebe Shakedown, Sophistafunk, Timbre Coup, Tim Herron Corporation, Shameless Strangers, Aqueous, Roadside Mystic, SwitchaRoo, Dynamic Operations and Lucid, which will serve as the event’s host band, playing both nights.
“We have such a great line-up from start to finish so it should be a good year,” said Katie Bazzano, one of the festival’s founders and another organizer of the event.
Backwoods Pondfest has become “a big production,” said Boire.
“We have a huge sound system, top techs running the equipment, including the sound engineer from the Higher Ground mixing the sound for the main stage,” he said. “We’ve added the folks of the Liquid Light Show to illuminate all of the stage walls to add to the visuals of the show and we added a second tent so there are no breaks in music as one bands stops.”
Since 2007, Backwoods Pondfest has grown each year, with the traffic to the event’s website, www.backwoodspondfest.com, picking up steadily.
“Our web traffic has really picked up from last year to this year and buzz from not-typical festival goers is high,” said Boire.
That is important, added Boire.
“The diehard music lovers will always come but I want my people who love a good time but only catch a live band once a month to experience Backwoods Pondfest,” said Boire. “They will love it.”
Having an event like Backwoods Pondfest helps not only entertain people but get music out to the masses for bands who might not otherwise be heard in smaller settings, said Boire.
“[The bands] deserve to be heard by locals who don’t know them yet and get to play for people who are not from the area to grow their fan base,” he said.
Organizing the event has taken a “ton of work” by those behind the scenes, said Boire.
“We all collaborate on everything, but I got a taste on the inner working of negotiating contracts, working with schedules and creating the right music flow from show to show throughout the weekend,” said Boire.
In the end, it’s all worth it, he said.
“If anything, it’s a departure from the daily grind,” Boire said of the event. “It’s a totally loose, relaxed atmosphere with great music playing for two days.”
“This is the biggest live music event in the area, without a doubt — 23 bands, 31 shows,” he added.
This year’s Backwoods Pondfest will also have a special meaning, said Bazzano. The festival will be dedicated to Mike Potashnick, who served as the event’s stage manager and mentor. Potashnick passed away unexpectedly in January which Bazzano said was hard on all those involved with the event who knew him.
“He was an incredible guy and had such love for music,” said Bazzano. “So, this year’s festival, along with donating canned goods to the JCEO, we are going to donate a portion of our proceeds to a local school’s music program in his name.”
For more information about Backwoods Pondfest, including where to purchase tickets, visit www.backwoodspondfest.com.