The dates were selected after a review of potential weather and possible temperature issues — these reviews resulted from 2013’s unexpected cold spell, which brought unseasonably cold evenings and chilly days to the festival.
A new addition to the festival is the Meadow Stage, an added outdoor stage that can seat 5,000-10,000.
Another addition is a Storytelling Program higher up in the Meadow in Fuller’s Hollar, and presentation pieces and storytelling will be in the middle of a natural amphitheater surrounded by the Cherokee National Forest.
The festival also plans a series of presentations by local and national instrument builders and repairers who will be on hand for clinics as well as consultations on any issues involving stringed instruments.
Also new this season will be advanced ticketing by a national ticketing agency and advanced reservations for camping and vendor spaces. This will enhance turnaround times for ticketing.
Time and Pay of Johnson City will be returning as a sponsor. The company was one of the earliest and strongest supporters of the festival, being the first to provide assistance in 2011 when it faced location challenges. Time and Pay helped again at critical points in 2013.
The Hampton Inn will again be a main sponsor of the event and the Johnson City location will again be the preferred accommodations for the Festival staff and all out-of-town visitors. Free passes will be made available to all Hampton Inn guests during the Festival.
Insurance coverage for the Festival will be provided by Watauga Insurance of Johnson City again this year, and two beverage trailers will be selling a variety of cold beers. Non-alcoholic beverages will be available in The Festival Canteen.
The addition of the Meadow Stage will provide for more acts as well, and the event is currently accepting applications for 60-90 performance spots. All artists are compensated. For an application, go to http://bit.ly/LMCweK.
For more information on the festival, go to www.johnsoncityfolkfestival.com or www.facebook.com/johnsoncityfolkfestival.