Every year, a motley mixture of music-lovers head to the small town of Rock Creek, B.C. to hunker down for one of the summer’s freshest independent festivals.
The Ponderosa Music Festival takes the spirit of sun-soaked campground parties and mashes it up with a killer lineup of live music.
The result is a weekend full of lazy tube rides down a winding river, epic dance parties that last into the night, and snacking on peaches plucked straight from the orchard.
“People come and they literally have the time of their lives,” says festival co-founder Kris Hargrave. “When you put cool vibes together with floating down the river, an epic festival site, a sick lineup of performers, talented artists and vendors—and then top it off with pancakes and fresh Okanagan fruits from a local farm, you have something that can’t be beaten.”
Hargrave and co-founder Kia Zahrabi say they pride themselves on keeping the festival upbeat, intimate, and fun. That means bucking music festival norms like corporate sponsors, rave culture, cramped campgrounds, and $5 bottles of water.
“We are striving to maintain a certain vibe and are looking to build a sense of community that we feel has faded from most of the larger outdoor music events,” Hargrave says.
“We feel so passionate about this project, and take every opportunity to bring something genuine and pure to those who attend—going back to the true meaning of hosting a party,” he adds.
That means things like flapjack breakfasts, interactive art, and group yoga classes every morning. It also means enjoying it all in the breathtaking B.C. backcountry where attendees have room to breath and soak up some nature.
Ponderosa was born after what was supposed to be a small orchard party turned into a long-weekend bash where nearly 100 people came together to play music, tube down the river, and camp under the stars.
The weekend sparked a dream for Hargrave and Zahrabi—and that dream became a reality the very next year with the first-ever Ponderosa Music Festival. Ponderosa is now headed into its sixth year.
While the Ponderosa has always felt like a fun-loving weekend bash, it’s also brought in some top-notch acts over the years.
“We don’t discriminate against any style of music; an amazing band is an amazing band, and that’s all we care about. It is more about discovery and creating more space for artists to perform in B.C.’s interior,” Hargrave says.
In the past Ponderosa has hosted acts like Wolf Parade, Timber Timbre, Austra, Psychic Ills, Five Alarm Funk, Braids, Black Mountain, The Funk Hunters, Plants and Animals, Jay Malinowski, Bear Mountain, Royal Canoe, and more.
It has also introduced local and up-and-coming bands like, Gay Nineties, Youngblood, Little Destroyer, Harpoonist and the Axe Murder, Andrew Judah, IMUR, Peach Pit, Art Decco, just to name a few.
This year’s lineup will be announced at a special white-pants-themed party May 11. The festival itself will take place Aug 17-19.
For more information, or to purchase tickets, check out Ponderosa Music Festival online.
This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Okanagan Edge.
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