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Midsummer Bluegrass Music Festival in Manitowish Waters this weekend

July 24, 2020

Set among the towering pine trees and lake-dotted landscape in Manitowish Waters comes the 31st annual Midsummer Bluegrass Music Festival on Thursday through Sunday, July 23-26. The event is hosted by the Cozy Cove Tavern & Restaurant, and this year’s outdoor event (Wisconsin’s longest running annual bluegrass festival) features five traditional artists/bands: Junior Sisk, Amanda Cook Band, Tony and Heather (Berry) Mabe, Daughters of Bluegrass, and Hand-Picked. 

As an added attraction, the progressive or jambase parameters of bluegrass music will be explored with performances by Feed The Dog and Ginstrings.

Headliner Junior Sisk is highly decorated as one of today’s top bluegrass vocalists, and a constant reminder that traditional bluegrass is still alive and well. If bluegrass was Major League Baseball or the NFL, crooner Junior Sisk would be a sure bet to be a first ballot Hall of Famer after his retirement. Fortunately for the MidSummer Fest, Sisk is a long way from retirement.

Another one of the highlights of the 31st annual Midsummer Bluegrass Festival is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday with the performance of the Daughters of Bluegrass show. Each year at the Daughters of Bluegrass festival in Guyton, Ga., a new daughter is inducted into the ranks.

The festival celebrates female-led bluegrass acts, including many who had performed on the various Daughters of Bluegrass award winning albums over the years, some of which Heather Berry-Mabe had performed on. Within the past few years, both Amanda Cook and Carolyne VanLierop-Boone were also inducted. The Manitowish Waters audience will see first hand why Cook, VanLierop-Boone and Berry-Mab’s talents were so highly credentialed by a jury of their peers.

This year’s festival is taking a close look as to how female Bluegrass artists bring a strong and beautiful balance to the Bluegrass genre by featuring five female centric acts.

Sunday’s Gospel line-up allows for farewell performances by Ragtime John & His Open Mic Ensemble and Ginstrings starting at 10 a.m.

Daily and weekend passes (includes walk-in camping on-site) are among the ticket options. RV or trailer camping is also available; all campsites are rustic, but a call ahead to reserve is encouraged because of a limited number of on-site spaces. Cozy Cove is on 5786 U.S. Highway 51. Bring a blanket or lawn chair for the musical performances. 

For more information, contact bluegrass festival at 715-543-2166 or email at [email protected] Visit www.MidSummerBluegrass.com to see the full schedule and detailed ticket information.

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