Concert Event Review: Renewal is a “Model for Festivals in Meadows” | Free content

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Renew: Make something new; restore freshness, vigor or perfection.

Renewal: The quality or state of being renewed.

The celebration of two “Renewal” nights at Meadows from September 24th to 25th was a magical, moving and energetic experience for anyone who managed to secure one of the 5,000 tickets available.

Bonfire Entertainment and Billy Strings have chosen this little piece of heaven for a highly anticipated album release. String’s “Renewal” hit the world on September 24th and through 2 nights, 6 sets and a few late-night jam sessions, he was able to intimately show off his art to a crowd that included kids in make-up, helmets wearing everything. – little ones, young adults, the elderly, the deer behind the scenes and everything and everyone in between.

Renewal was a perfect theme as Buena Vista and the nation begin to shed all that has been and still is a global pandemic.

Scotty Stoughton, owner of Bonfire Entertainment, is no stranger to the pristine location, the city, and the hosting of sustainable, like-minded, community-driven festivals. Stoughton and his team are also behind Campout for the Cause, WinterWondergrass, and RiverWondergrass.

As he navigated this pandemic world in a job whose main purpose is to create beautiful events with many people, he found solace in seeking the beauty of challenge.

Spectators were required to show either a negative COVID-19 test or proof of vaccination.

The team worked with Buena Vista’s Clean Republic on infection prevention. There were manual contactless dispensers in high traffic areas, masks were welcome but by no means forced, personal responsibility was encouraged and it was like a safe place. Neighbors and visitors alike enjoyed this busy weekend.

“My experience watching Billy Strings and his band perform at The Renewal has been filled with things that a successful music festival aims to provide: shared joy, gratitude and laughter; all covered with inspiration, ”said Erin Wenzel of Buena Vista.

“I loved the privacy among the huge crowd. The convenience and fun of camping on the site made the experience amazing. I felt like I was completely away from home, but literally in my backyard, ”said Samantha Bahn from Salida.

“The focus on getting tickets into the hands of the locals created a kind of reunion after our prolonged separation in the event of a pandemic. Public health protocols have created a safe environment for the geographically diverse crowd to come together into one bluegrass loving community, ”said Casey Martin of BV. “And the friendly atmosphere my wife and I experienced on Friday night encouraged us to bring our 8 and 10 year old boys on Saturday (the 3 year old stayed home with Grandma). They had a great time, and while they were impressed with Billy Strings, local legend Coleman Smith really stole the show.

Going forward, the Bonfire Entertainment team are excited to have both a Campout for the Cause in June and an annual fall renewal event.

“Let’s make it great. Our ultimate goal is to work with the people of the city, ”said Stoughton. “Going forward, we plan to do a full recap to the community, open the discussion, get everyone together and have a town hall.

“These festivals are a ton of work. I’m not the type who wants to grow up in order to grow taller. My goal is to create certain events in sacred places and to do it right, while being aware of the community. “

For those who still resist music in the Meadows, Stoughton says he has empathy and compassion.

“I totally understand. I am the first person on the site. I’m the last person to go, ”he said. “I talk to all the neighbors. I listen to the pros and cons. I want to talk to everyone.

Our little mountain paradise is growing exponentially. Bonfire Entertainment is a good partner to present thoughtful, genuine and respectful events in the future.

“Growth is on the move, so let’s work together to guide the cultural strategy. Strategic thinking and community engagement are my number one priority, ”says Stoughton.

“A nod should also be given to Chaffee County,” he said. “They were so amazing and supportive. We hope to be a model of what a festival at The Meadows looks like in the future. “


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