The sixth annual Music on the Mountain (now Meadow) festival took place last weekend, in the event’s new home at the fair grounds. With some 80 acres at their disposal, the festival organizers were able to ensure there was plenty of room for campers, day visitors, vendors, workshops, and of course music.
Jennifer Bruvold has been to all six of the MoM events; her husband Iyan is a banjo player, and has done at least one set at each festival. “I love the new venue,” she said. “The mountain was great, but here there’s room to grow.”
Eric Ackerly, who is on the Board of Directors for MoM, said he went to the first one in 2010 and fell in love. “The next year I volunteered to help set up fences and tents, and in the third year I joined the Society,” he says. It’s his first year on the Board, and he wants to thank all the people who helped out with this year’s event, acknowledging that there were a few challenges.
“We thought we had a stage lined up, but less than three weeks before opening day found out we didn’t.” This resulted in a scramble for material to build a stage and volunteers to put it together, but it all worked out, and on opening day the stage was ready to go. “Over the years I’ve truly come to appreciate [key organizers] Lionel and Rosemary Conant’s ability to pull a rabbit out of a hat,” he chuckles. Ackerly also praised the new site. “It’s a better venue with more room, and it’s much easier for the vendors. It’s a beautiful space to spread out.”
Amid the music and fun there was a moment for reflection, when the smaller B Stage—used for shorter sets while the main stage was being set up—was officially renamed the Bill Stage, in honour of longtime MoM supporter Bill Phillips, who passed away earlier this year shortly after being named Vice-President of the Board. “Bill was involved with MoM since the beginning,” said Lionel Conant. “He was an electrician, and built and installed a power board for us that first year. We still use it for smaller shows like house concerts. He was a great friend of the festival.”