Guide to the Playhouse Family Music Festival in Sugar Grove!

Here is all the scoop on the Children’s Playhouse Family Music Festival this weekend! All proceeds support The Children’s Playhouse, a nonprofit children’s museum in Boone.

  • · Ticket Information—It’s not too late to save over the gate price!playhouse
  • · Directions to Sugar Grove
  • · Performance Line-Up
  • · A Chance to Earn Free Tickets
  • · Food and Kids’ Activities
  • · Spotlight on the Performers
  • · Kids’ Craft Market

Playhouse Family Music Festival, 5:30-11:00 pm Friday, August 7 & 11 am-6 pm, Saturday, August 8th at the Historic Cove Creek School, Sugar Grove, North Carolina (7 miles west of Boone). Sol Driven Train, Big Bang Boom, Lazy Birds, Puppet Parade, plus airwalks, crafts, food, contra dance and more!

Tickets & Info:, 828-263-0011, The Playhouse, Green Mother Goods, & Mast General Store.

  • Friday only adult $10, Friday only kid $4
  • Contra only adult $8. Saturday only adult $18, Saturday only kid $6.
  • 2 day adult $25, 2 day child $10. Under 2 free.
  • We have a fantastic deal on our website ( for a Two day family pass [two adults, up to 4 kids (2 and up)] for $50. This offer is not available at the gate.

Directions to the Playhouse Family Music Festival

The Playhouse Family Music Festival will take place at the Historic Cove Creek School just 7.3 miles west of Boone NC. Take US 421/321 west toward TN 5.2 miles. US 421 splits north toward Mountain City TN. US 321 splits west toward Hampton TN. Turn left on US 321 and go 1.1 miles to Sugar Grove.
The Cove Creek Grocery is on the right, the Sugar Grove Post Office on the left.
Turn right on Old US 421 just past the Cove Creek Grocery. Follow signs for parking for the events.

Playhouse Family Music Festival Schedule
All activities take place at The Historic Cove Creek School, 207 Dale Adams Road, Sugar Grove.
Friday August 7th
Tent Stage
5:30 Lisa Baldwin and Dave Haney
6:30 Lost Ridge Band
Contra Dance with dot-dot-dash, the Forget-Me-Nots, and caller Diane Silver.
7:30-9:00 Family Dance
9:00-11:00 “Grown-ups” Dance

Saturday August 8th
Tent Stage
11:00 Lisa Baldwin’s “Learning through Song”
12:00 Big Bang Boom
1:30 Belly Dancers
2:45 The Lazybirds
4:30 Giant Puppet Parade with Elkland Art Center
5:00 Sol Driven Train

Shelter Stage
1:00 Puppet Workshop with Elkland Art Center
1:30 Juggling with Crazy Kaleb Kimbro (on grass)
2:15 Hen House Thieves
3:45 Drumming with Rhythm Foundation
4:10 Parade Gathering—choose your costume

Volunteer at the Festival and Earn Free Tickets!
We are looking for volunteers for set-up during the day on Friday (anytime between 9 am-5:30 pm), Friday night (anytime from 5:30-10:00 pm) and Saturday (anytime from 9 am – 7 pm). You can email or call 828-263-0011. Also, please spread the word that we need volunteers. We are offering families free two day admission if they give three hours but you can volunteer for as little or as much as you like.

Food and Kids’ Activities
The Playhouse Café will offer barbeque, pizza, veggie wraps, beef and veggie burgers and more with all proceeds going to The Children’s Playhouse.
In addition to music, festival-goers will enjoy airwalks and a giant slide, art activities, face painting, water play, plus food and high quality crafts vendors. Use of the giant slide and the two airwalks (provided by Appalachian Party Rental) is included with admission. There will be a puppet-making workshop on Saturday and festival goers will be invited to carry their puppets along with 100 other props created by Elkland Art Center in a giant puppet parade at 4:30 on Saturday.

Spotlight On Performers at The Playhouse Family Music Festival

Ancient Moon (1:30 Saturday), led by Annie Goodson, will provide an authentic belly dance demonstration.

Diane Silver. (7:30-11:00 Friday) An experienced caller based in Asheville, Silver is well suited for a night that will encompass dances for kids to grown-ups and from novices to experts. “She has a rare skill of bringing together dancers of all ages and all levels of experience into one big fun experience for everyone—without overly challenging the less experienced and without ho-humming the highly experienced” said Asheville parent and dancer Elana Kann.

dot-dot-dash (7:30-11:00 Friday). Specializing in Celtic, Appalachian dance, Old-time and Gypsy-jazz, dot-dot-dash includes Bill Anderson, John Hildreth, Joel Keebler, and Matt Livingston playing fiddle, guitar, mandolin, and double bass. Originally based in the Radford and Blacksburg areas of Southwest Virginia, Dot Dot Dash began performing in the fall of 2002. In the time since, the group has become spread out geographically, with members living in Boone, NC, as well as Roanoke, Abingdon and Pembroke, VA. The group has released two CD’s. Bill Anderson is the Watauga resident of the group with strong ties to The Children’s Playhouse. “Our kids, Rebecca and Gwendolyn, love The Playhouse and my wife Christine is a former board president,” says Anderson, “so we are excited to help The Playhouse with our music.”

Elkland Art Center (1:00 and 4:30 Saturday). An award winning art center and puppet troupe based in Todd, NC, Elkland will led a workshop on Saturday followed by a giant puppet parade.

Sol Driven Train. (Saturday at 4:30). This South Carolina band brings a quirky combination of strings, horns and inventive lyrics to the stage. The group’s two discs for kids, Tajar Tracks and Tajar Tracks Two have been universally acclaimed, the first voted Best Children’s Album of 2005 in South Carolina. But the band has ample grown up fans as well; Atlanta’s Creative Loafing praised their “languid world-beat, swampy funk and downright catchy melodies.”

Big Bang Boom. (Noon on Saturday). Featuring Chuck Folds (younger brother of Ben Folds), Steve Willard and drummer Eddie Walker, Big Bang Boom is a pop/rock music group from Greensboro, where they frequently play the Greensboro Children’s Museum.

Forget-Me-Nots (Friday at 7:30). Local Watauga phenoms, the Forget-Me-Nots are fiddlers Ledah and Willa Finck (ages 15 and 13), Maura Shawn Scanlin (age 13), and back-up guitarist-dad David Finck. The girls have been playing together for nine years, since they were ages 4, 3, and 2 years old. Their music mixes traditional Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton, and Appalachian fiddle music, with a helping of contemporary tunes. The Forget-Me-Nots have performed at a number of regional venues, including the Merlefest and the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.

Henhouse Thieves (2:15 Saturday) features Dave Hutchinson, Paul Orkiszewski and Vanessa Van Valin will play everything from pop music to folk music, original music, ethnic music, and even some operatic music.

The Lazybirds. (2:45 pm, Saturday). Praised by Doc Watson for their wonderful mix of blues, jazz and the “good old ragtime sound,” The Lazybirds are a popular country blues and jazz quintet based in the High Country.

Lisa Baldwin and Dave Haney. (5:30 Friday and 11 am Saturday) Singer-songwriter Lisa Baldwin performs bluegrass for adults with her husband Dave Haney and is popular locally and in Alabama for her “Learning through Song” concerts for children. Lisa will be back on Saturday morning with a Learning through Song program.

Lost Ridge. (6:30 Friday) Based in Boone, the Lost Ridge Band’s sound is inspired by The Grateful Dead, Railroad Earth, Steve Earl, Doc Watson, Earl Scruggs, Bela Fleck, The Dillards, and Widespread Panic. Their members are Pete and Phil Washburn, Elijah Davenport, Shane Crawford, and Peter Hanast.
Rhythm Foundation (3:45 Saturday), led by Nia and Jeff Dickens gathers a crowd with African drumming and dance.

Kids Craft Market and Operation Ramona

Kids can sell their own handmade items priced under $5 in the Kids Craft Market from 11:00-3:00.
Adults wishing to sell crafts or food are invited to call The Children’s Playhouse at 828-263-0011 or visit the website for an application.
There will be great kids’ books and comics at rock bottom prices in the Operation Ramona tent. This project of Craig, Nate, and Mercer Fischer will donate all proceeds to The Playhouse..


  1. And don’t forget about the craft vendors as well 🙂 I’ll be there with some Niki’s Knacks. Cayce will be there with great Sustainable Homestead products!