Earlier this year, Deke and I decided that we were going to see as many concerts as possible this summer (because last year I think we saw one) so when we learned about FloydFest we knew we had to check it out. It seemed smaller, almost all locally sponsored and more laid back than a lot of festivals out there, plus it was 3 hours away! (For a good, really short summary of the festival, I suggest reading This Must Be The Place from the Smokey Mountain News.) The bonus was we could make another trip to Virginia Highland Haven to stay! We love the place, and the town of Floyd, and music, so it was a no-brainer.

That's us on the left. I think.

That’s us on the left. I think.

Again, we had great weather, met some new folks, reconnected with some we’ve known only online and got to explore the area again, which didn’t disappoint. We wrote a review the last time we were here and mentioned the drive — I forgot to take a video, but here’s what our map looked like driving away from Floyd.

Many, many sharp turns.

Many, many sharp turns.

 

I think I’d like to live here……

View from the end of the  park.

View from the end of the park.

FloydFest was really fun, and we’re glad we did it, although staying up to see bands going on at midnight didn’t really work for us too much. It’s a really well organized event (free mountain spring water, 24 hour fantastic coffee station and beer is only sold in a cup you buy at the venue with tickets you also buy, so its an easy process, parking is in lots with a shuttle and the food options were numerous). If you go prepared, you’ll be ok (prepared=sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen). Also note: FloydFest really isn’t in Floyd proper, it’s several miles outside of town on the Blue Ridge Parkway, and about 25min drive from Highland Haven – without traffic.

There are big stages….

The Main Stage.

The Main Stage.

And really small ones…

Cooper McBean.

Cooper McBean.

You can stand way up front…

Trampled By Turtles.

Trampled By Turtles.

Or sit in the back and just listen (and people watch, which was often better than the bands).

It doesn't look like Deke has enough sunscreen on.

It doesn’t look like Deke has enough sunscreen on.

There were also some great, local vendors there as well — we each picked up a pair of shoes from Astral, a shoe company out of Asheville that makes really stylish shoes for kayaking! They gave you 20% off any pair of shoes if you swapped them out for a pair of your own. So far, I’m loving them. Also, they make incredibly cool lifevests as well — for humans and dogs!

Yes, those are the socks I'm wearing today.

Yes, those are the socks I’m wearing today.

We cut short concert going one day and hit Floyd and the surrounding area. We needed some food, so the Farmer’s Market was a success.

Veggies, kombucha stand, fruit, crepes and coffee.

Veggies, kombucha stand, fruit, crepes and coffee.

We had breakfast at the Blue Ridge Restaurant, had a Japanese style pour-over coffee at the Black Water Loft and walked to the biggest fabric store I’ve ever seen: Schoolhouse Fabrics.

Old school = mega fabric store.

Old school = mega fabric store.

Riverstone Farm Store.

Riverstone Farm Store.

The kicker was finding Riverstone Farm Store. On the Floyd Highway into town we saw this handwritten yellow sign stuck in the ground that said “Farm Store” with an arrow. We followed it for MILES on a very narrow dirt road then almost missed it. The Riverstone Farm is a certified organic farm (however their meat is not certified organic) with a self-serve store carrying chickens, lamb, mutton, veggies from the farm, and cheese, sauerkraut and some other things from local places. Definitely worth the stop. They also have a building across the road with bulk meats, so if you want a whole lamb, its butchered and you can just take it out of the cooler and leave the money. They also do tours on Saturdays at 2pm!

We hated to leave —

Blue Ridge Parkway.

Blue Ridge Parkway.