Upstate Spring Revival in Review Part 1/3: The Scene

Family. No other word can describe a regional festival like ’s Spring Revival festival better than family. Familiar faces from shows over the years. Passing by the same groups to and fro from the campsite, always with friendly salutations and wide smiles. Meeting new people spinning tails of their travels freely as if every soul they meet is an old friend. Sharing toasts and high fives with complete strangers, shyness abandoned. In our modern; smart-phone consumed; too busy to say hello world, this situational rarity is beyond refreshing. It’s a damn good feeling and a great way to spend a weekend in the woods. May 8-11 at The Whispering Pines Hideaway proved this concept beyond a shadow of doubt.


The Hideaway is typically an aviary hunting preserve and ATV adventure site, with trap towers, clay pigeon throwers, and rut filled off-roading trails throughout the area. While this may seem an ironic venue for a gathering of peace loving hippies, it proved itself perfect for the weekends experience. Car camping was available throughout the site with a plethora of settings, be it wooded, open field, or just a place to lay down in the grass. Musicians roamed freely through the crowd chatting with fans and fellow music makers. Both secondary and primary stages were located in a lower area, surrounded by trees, but still allowing a picturesque view of the sunset. The stages were minutes from each other with a variety of vending, drum circles and lessons, and glass blowing demonstrations all conveniently located within the main “Shakedown Street”.


Weather ended up being better than forecast. Thursday night through late Friday afternoon was beautiful. Friday night through Saturday was a bit rough with blowing rain but everyone kept in good spirits. Many huddled around campfires sharing jovial tales while others wandered the site in rain ponchos making new friends. Musicians plowed through the weather unscathed and everyone delivered excellent sets. Saturday night, between sets, Solar Flare and entourage offered up a spectacular display of pyrotechnic acrobatics.  Other activities included live glass blowing demonstrations, drum lessons and circles, face painting, and much more.

Come back tomorrow to read our review of “The Sounds” featuring pictures by contributing photographer Kevin Burke.


Photos by Darren Kemp

Editors note: This is part one of our three part review of the Spring Revival festival. Each article will include a photo gallery from one of our three featured photographers.

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