The annual Temecula Bluegrass Festival kicked off Saturday in Old Town Temecula. Considered one of the finest bluegrass festivals on the West Coast, bands from all over the United States travelled to Temecula to play, including the Wimberleys, Sligo Rags, Salty Suites with Scott Gates and Tail Draggers.
Kicking off the event was Sweet Tidings Gospel Jam Live at Main Street in the square. Throughout the day, the different bands made their way from stage to stage performing for the crowds.
“This is a great event to bring the community together and to hear good music,” said Hope Reed, a board member of the Southwest Bluegrass Association, which promotes bluegrass and upcoming festivals throughout the United States. “Even if you are not a fan, or have never heard this style of music, everyone will have fun.”
The music wasn’t the only attraction—vendors, workshops and sidewalk sales gave the event a festive feeling.
Visiting from Ocean Beach, Glenn Olsen, 63, was impressed by the event.
“My sister lives locally and came last year and just raved about it,” said Olsen. “When she told me about this year’s event, I had to make the trip.”
Olsen plays guitar and while he came for the music, he was excited to attend some of the workshops.
“When I heard they had a guitar workshop, I couldn’t believe it!”
Olsen wasn’t the only one. Many in attendance were surprised with the quality and variety of bands as well as the other activities throughout Old Town.
Temecula resident Patricia Thompson came to spend time with her family but made an unlikely connection.
“Someone gave my grandkids a violin and we found someone who gives lessons,” said Thompson. “They always wanted to play it, but they were scared and they didn’t know how. Now, in 10 minutes, they aren’t scared and even learned how to play a bit.
“It’s a great event to meet new people, make connections and learn new things”
The Temecula Bluegrass festival continues Sunday. For more information, click here.