The Mad Tea Party Jam is a festival that friends have been buzzing about for years. This year, I am finally going to make it, and I’m excited to bring you the inside scoop of the weekend, garnished with a gallery by Amanda Siedner.
This year’s Mad Tea Party Jam will take place from June 16 through 19 in Artemas, PA, at the Four Quarters InterFaith Sanctuary, a new location for the festival. This will be the fifth anniversary of the event, which began as the wedding of Elise and Taco Olmstead, founders of the Appalachian Jamwich. Now it is an anniversary celebration that the couple shares with everyone, and it’s a gathering that focuses heavily on the art community, in addition to packing the weekend with amazing musical experiences (see the video below).
Topping this year’s lineup are Papadosio, Twiddle and Tauk, with each playing two sets. Other scheduled artists include Consider the Source (Radiohead Set), Big Something and Aqueous playing three sets each, two Broccoli Samurai sets, the Jauntee, the Primate Fiasco, Electric Love Machine (ELM), two Litz sets, Deltanine, Definition of One, Oh Kee Pa and more (see the full schedule here).
Artists and Workshops
Throughout the weekend, there will a team of live painters creating visual art for festival-goers to explore while enjoying the music. The weekend is jam-packed with alluring workshops. Notably, Dale Allen Hoffman, the key-note speaker, will offer “profound insights about Mary and the Divine Feminine” in his workshop “Isis-Magdalene and the Sacred Fire of Ecstasy.” You can learn sacred geometry/mandala making with Charles Gilchrist, or learn about innovative eco-sustainable architecture with Gariel Carazos. There will be a 90-minute vinyasa-style Yoga workshop with Courtney Gabinetti to help open your heart, and a Laughter Yoga Workshop with Damon Owen. Other workshops include an Empowerment workshop, Healing Through Hoop, Merkabah Light Body Activation, among others. You can see the full list of workshops and their descriptions here.
The new location seems to be a great fit for such a spiritual, art-geared event. According to the website, since 1994, “Four Quarters has been growing functional cultural alternatives, firmly grounded in an Ecological and Earth Spiritual perspective… A sacred place in the Alleghenies, set aside in perpetuity as a Sanctuary for Nature… and for People.” It will feature a shaded camping area perfect for hammocks, a swimming hole for festival-goers to dip into to cool off and two fishing ponds. You can learn more about the Four Quarters InterFaith Sanctuary on their website.
Mad Tea Party Jam offers a VIP experience that will feature camping closest to the stages and the VIP lounge, catered dinner with the bands, a VIP laminate and a Merch Package. There will be a costume theme on each of the three nights that the website encourages people to “interpret loosely;” Thursday is Toga, Friday will be Disco and Saturday plans for a Star Wars/Space theme.
Things to Know
According the Mad Tea Party website, festival-goers won’t be able to camp next to their cars, however, they will be able to drop their things off at their campsite before driving the car out to parking. Children are welcome at the festival; anyone under the age of 13 will be admitted for free. Water stations will be available, as well as a few small restrooms with showers, in addition to the porta-potties around the grounds. Mad Tea Party is a BYOB event for those of the legal drinking age, but Four Quarters will be selling bottles of their mead. Bad attitudes, glass, fireworks, pets are among things listed as not welcome at the festival.