Meet the Mountains Festival promises "high-energy" weekend of activities

Jonathan Roberts • Aug 19, 2019 at 12:00 AM

The Way Down Wanderers have played more than a few outdoor festivals, but Saturday will be their first outdoor show in Johnson City.

“Although we’ve played Johnson City a number of times, we’ve never played an outdoor festival before in Johnson City, so we’re really excited to play outside for everybody and hopefully we can bring a big crowd out there,” said band member Collin Krause.

Fortunately for them, Johnson City’s second Meet the Mountains Festival promises to be even bigger than an inaugural event that brought over 7,000 people to Founders Park over the festival’s two days in 2018.

“We got a lot of positive feedback (from 2018), so we didn’t want to tinker too much with how the festival layout and everything was and all the elements that we brought in,” said festival organizer Kayla Carter.

“We want to maintain that level of expectation from the folks who came last year, but also deliver something a little more exciting this year for the new folks who might come for the first time.”

Festival goers can expect a good time both Friday and Saturday, though Krause says the band’s Saturday show will be a “really high-energy set.”

“We kind of play a mix of Americana and folk music, heavily inspired by the tradition of bluegrass music so our drummer is going to be playing some spoons, we’ve got a bunch of three-part harmonies,” he said. “I think it’s going to be a good time and hopefully there’ll be something for everybody at our set.”

If music isn’t your thing, the outdoors-focused festival has plenty to offer, from ziplines and earth, water and air zones to a myriad of off-site events designed to get people from the region outside and “meet the mountains.”

“We hope the community is already energized and excited about outdoor recreation, but one of the other goals for the festival is to shift culture a little bit -- really our mission is promoting healthy and active lifestyles and really promoting awareness for outdoor recreation resources in the area,” Carter said.

And though the festival is still in its infancy, it’s certainly a perfect match for a city whose catchphrase is “Go All Out.”

“It’s a culmination of everything in the region there is to do — it’s a place to find all the people and resources to get out and enjoy nature,” Carter said.

For more information, visit the festival’s website at www.mtmfest.com.  

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