The Music on the Mountain Society is so pleased with this year’s new venue for the festival—the old fair grounds—that they’ve already spoken with the snowmobile club (which owns the grounds) and arranged for next year’s festival to be held there.
Society President Lionel Conant couldn’t be more pleased with this year’s event. “It went really well. We had about 800 people this year, close to 300 more than last year, and the gate was up by 50%. The venue was stunning—very village-like—and very easy to work with and manage.”
Conant admits that there were a few early fears about fire and dust as a result of the long stretch of hot, dry weather, but in the end Mother Nature helped out. “We had rain on Thursday, and that helped,” he says, adding that concert goers even got a bonus: a display of Northern Lights late on Saturday that accompanied the action onstage.
Although the police came by occasionally to check on things, there was no security trouble at all throughout the concert, something Conant attributes to the atmosphere that organizers have tried to cultivate. “There were 70 to 80 kids under the age of 12 at the festival, and that gives it a real family atmosphere, which really helps to mitigate the situation.”
Although the next MoM festival is still a year away, the work never stops. “We’ll be doing some work at the site this fall,” says Conant. They won’t have to take the stage down, but it needs weatherproofing before winter, and there are a few other jobs to be done. And the business of raising funds, booking bands, and writing grants starts now. “We’re also planning house concerts and other gigs around here over the winter, as part of our mandate as a Society to promote art and culture. It’s a great mentorship opportunity for local youth, being able to come and talk to working musicians.”
Volunteers are always appreciated, for ongoing events and for next year’s festival. Asked if the festival will officially be changing its name, Conant laughs. “Music on the Meadow was never its official name, and we’ve had a few people say it could still be called Music on the Mountain. If anyone has any suggestions that fit the MoM acronym they’d like to toss at us, we’d love to hear them.” The Society can be contacted via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
“We’ve had overwhelming local support and help from people, government, and businesses,” says Conant. “And we had a number of musicians who came up to us and said that of all the festivals they’ve been to, this was their favourite event of the summer. We’re glad they’re happy to be here.”