published Friday, May 20th, 2011

RootsFest celebrates five years this weekend


What: RootsFest music festival.

When: Noon today-6:30 p.m. Sunday.

Where: Cherokee Farms, 2035 Old Mineral Springs Road, Lafayette, Ga.

Admission: $50 (three-day), $40 (two-day), $25 (one-day) at the gate.

Phone: 645-9699.




6 p.m. Go Get ’em Sheriff

6:45 p.m. Sparkz

7:30 p.m. Baybee Invincible

8:15 p.m. Foam Party

9:15 p.m. Verb

10:30 p.m. Robo Sapien n Saturday

11:30 a.m. The Shaky Show

12:15 p.m. Opposite Box

1 p.m. Strung Like a Horse

1:45 p.m. Glowing Bordis

2:30 p.m. Hurley’s Kickass Band

3:30 p.m. Molly Maguires

4:30 p.m. Cannonbus

5:30 p.m. Deep Machine

6:30 p.m. Digital Butter

7:30 p.m. The Nim Nims

8:30 p.m. Milele Roots

9:30 p.m. Donna Hopkins Band


Noon. Danimal Pinson

1 p.m. BJ

1:45 p.m. Riot Punch

2:40 p.m. Maycomb Criers

4 p.m. Endelouz

5:20 p.m. The Owls

When Ada Barnes founded the RootsFest music festival in 2006, it was basically an excuse to camp out with her friends for three days and help area musicians get their names out. After five years, that goal hasn’t changed, she said.

“If I had gotten to the point where I thought I was getting off why I started it, I would not do it at all,” Barnes said. “Every year, I leave with new best friends, and everyone can say that, along with newfound favorite bands.”

RootsFest starts today at noon and will continue through Sunday at Cherokee Farms in LaFayette, Ga.

In addition to music provided by about two dozen local and regional bands, attendees will be able to take part in face and body painting, an acoustic music drum circle and view the work of local artists and dancers.

Changes this year include a dunk tank, a revamped children’s tent, which will host movies throughout the day, and a more-focused approach to the DJ tent, which will host bass music tonight and house music Saturday.

At a time when many festivals are closing due to economic woes and slumping attendance, Barnes said RootsFest has grown every year. Last year, it it attracted about 500 attendees.

While she doesn’t want to invite a jinx, Barnes said ticket presells seem to indicate the turnout this year will be even bigger.

With five years under her belt, Barnes said there’s no magic bullet to making a festival succeed, but growing at the right pace has been key.

“I’m very glad we’ve made it this far,” she said. “We took it year by year the first few years to see if it was something that would take off and if it was something needed around town. Since we’re at year five, I guess it was.

“I have people tell me ... they plan their vacations around it. It definitely means a whole lot to people, based on the response I get.”

about Casey Phillips...

Casey Phillips has worked as a features reporter in the Life department since May 2007. He writes about entertainment, consumer technology, animals and news of the weird. Casey hails from Knoxville and earned a bachelor of science degree in journalism and a bachelor of arts in German from Middle Tennessee State University, where he worked as the features editor for the student newspaper, Sidelines. Casey's writing has earned numerous accolades, including first and second place ...

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