Bluegrass Back In Grottoes

Posted: August 26, 2014

Staff Writer

The 29th Annual Bluegrass Festival will be held from noon-9 p.m. Sept. 4 and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sept. 5-6 at Grand Caverns in Grottoes. Last year, the event raised more than $13,000 to benefit the Shriners Hospitals for Children. (Photo by Michael Reilly / DN-R, File)

Beginning next Thursday, 13 bands will take to the stage over the course of three days.

Acoustic guitars, mandolins and fiddles will be on display at the 29th annual Bluegrass Festival. This year’s concert series is slated for noon-9 p.m. Sept. 4; 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sept. 5, and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sept. 6. at Grand Caverns in Grottoes.

“It’s all bluegrass music,” says Lettie Stickley, parks and recreation specialist at Grand Caverns. “Most of the bands are roots-type bluegrass [bands] from all over the country.”

A mix of local and national ensembles will take the stage, ranging from the Little Mountain Boys of Nelson County, slated to perform Day One, to The James King Band, the festival’s closing group.

Other bands on the lineup include The Hillbilly Gypsies, The Country Gentlemen Tribute Band, The Carolina Rebels and Dark Hollow, among others.

“We’ve provided [area residents] with some of the top bluegrass bands in the nation,” said Kyle Miller, festival coordinator. “It’s an entertaining event.”

The festival lends itself to the entire family, as the alcohol-free event allows campers to bring their RVs to the grounds beginning Sept. 2. This gives families a chance to spend a better part of the week on the Grand Caverns premises, says Stickley.

In conjunction with the entertainment, locals also have the opportunity to contribute to what Stickley calls a “worthy” cause: 100 percent of the net proceeds raised benefit the Shriners Hospitals for Children.

The organization, comprised of 22 hospitals in North America, caters to children with orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate abnormalities, regardless of a family’s ability to pay, according to the Shriner’s official website.

Last year, more than $13,000 was raised, according to Stickley.

“I can’t think of a better cause to put your money,” she added. “And it’s not going into a promoter’s pocket; it’s strictly a fundraiser for the Shriners.”

Miller, who heads the Luray jurisdiction of the Shenandoah Valley Shriners, says the festival will serve as a key fundraiser for the chapter.

“You’re supporting a charity and a good cause,” he noted.

For more information, visit or call Grand Caverns at 249-5705.

Contact Matt Gonzales at (540) 574-6265 or

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