Moogfest is a music, technology, and art event that takes place every year over several days. It was started as a way to pay homage to American composer and inventor Robert Arthur "Bob" Moog, who is often hailed as the founder of electronic music. He is also credited as the inventor of the Moog synthesizer.
Robert Moog spent the last thirty years of his life in Asheville, North Carolina, where the event was first held. He addressed the crowds at Moogfest 2004.
Brian Eno, Devo, Kraftwerk, The School of Rock, Will Calhoun, Erik Norlander, Thomas Dolby, and Jordan Rudess are some of the artists who have performed at Moogfest in the past. Many of the performers have used Moog instruments to make music or have been inspired by Robert Moog in one way or another.
The festival was shifted to Durham, North Carolina in 2015. It now takes place across multiple venues in downtown Durham. Festival-goers can also enjoy incredible visual art exhibitions, interactive experiences, film screenings, workshops and panel discussions. Today artists and audiences from all over the world travel to the city to be a part of Moogfest.
There are three ticket tiers available: General Admission, VIP Moogerfooger, and Engineer. The Early Bird prices range from $150 for general admission passes to $1500 for the Engineer passes. A single ticket will give you access to performances, conversations, installations and festival workshops on all three days of the event.
The high-end Engineer passes give you all the benefits of the VIP passes along with exclusive access to a two-day synth-building engineer workshop, led by Moog engineers. Engineer pass holders will also be able to book spots for other workshops in advance. Take a look at the festival website for more details on tickets and pricing.
Motorists will likely have a reasonably easy time driving an RV in Durham, but be mindful of springtime storms. It is a small city with many of the attractions scattered around the area. Guests may want to use a route finding app to check if you’re on the right track. Driving to the festival is not recommended since parking is minimal traffic may increase during Moogfest.
Parking is extremely limited and will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. There is no daytime parking offered, but special paid spots will be made available in the evening on the days of the event. There are also a few paid parking garages near the festival area, but these tend to fill up fast and may not all accommodate larger RV rigs.
Public transportation options in Durham are affordable and well connected. You can get to the downtown area from different parts of the city by bus, train, or taxi. Train tickets can be purchased on the Amtrak website. If you’d rather take a bus, there are plenty of routes that will get you close to the festival area.
Camping on the festival grounds is not allowed, so it’s best to choose from one of the many campsites and RV parks nearby.
You’ll find some great RV parks in Durham, not too far from the downtown area. They are usually clean, well-priced, and well-maintained. RV parks in the area also retain positive reviews online with past guests mentioning the hospitality of the hosts, beautiful views, excellent water hookups, large sites, clean bathrooms, and other camper-friendly facilities.
Moogfest performances and activities take place at different venues in the Downtown area. They are all close to each other, and guests can enjoy getting around on foot. Using a bike or a skateboard can also help you move around faster. The entrances are ADA accessible, and special efforts will be made to accommodate patrons with disabilities.
The vibe at Moogfest is pretty casual, and most people will be wearing comfortable spring attire. A few guests may choose to dress in costume or fun attire. It’s a good idea to stick with jeans, shorts, t-shirts, and flowy summer dresses for ease of travel between activities. A comfortable pair of shoes is a must.
Some essentials to carry with you are sunglasses, ear plugs, bug repellent, a hat, and a portable battery charger. You can take these in a small backpack or purse. If you plan on attending the workshops, be sure to carry your musical instruments or any equipment you may need with you.
Protect your skin from the sun by wearing sunscreen and a hat. Be sure to take frequent breaks and stay hydrated. If there’s a chance that you’ll be in the city for all the days of the festival, be sure to pace yourself. This way you won't miss out on any shows or workshops you’d really like to attend.
Campers can prepare meals and snacks at a local RV resort or campground and enjoy a meal together before heading to Moogfest. It’s a good idea to check what’s allowed in advance. While cooking on the stove in your RV is usually permitted, there may be some restrictions regarding open fires. Cooking at the festival venues is not permitted.
Durham is well known for its delicious southern cooking, and classic American staples like burgers and wings. Northern Carolina has a vibrant heritage of fresh seafood and produce. You can also find restaurants serving up delicious global cuisine, Sushi, and Italian fare. Don’t forget to round out your meal with some divine baked goods and desserts.
Vendors selling delicious food and beverages will be located in some areas. Whether you’re in the mood for the usual festival fare or southern comfort food, you’re sure to find it here. Juices, cocktails, wine, and beer will be on sale, and you can also enjoy some brews created especially for the festival.
Security officers and volunteers will be present at Moogfest entrances and will also be making rounds at the various locations. They will help manage line control and space capacity to ensure that order is maintained at all times. All attendees will be checked for the proper credentials before entering the venue and bags may be searched.
The weather is likely to be quite pleasant in Durham in April. Moogfest is a rain or shine event, and most attendees don’t let a little drizzle bother them. Many of the performance and workshops are held indoors. Remember to bring a jacket and wear closed shoes since it may get chilly once the sun sets.
EMTs will be on site to provide first aid and medical assistance to anyone who needs it. It’s a good idea to contact the organizers in advance if you need to take in a particular medication or have queries regarding the accessibility of the venue. If you or someone you know requires help, you can reach out to one of the EMTs, volunteers or festival staff making the rounds.