The RockyGrass Festival is an acclaimed traditional bluegrass event that lovers of the musical genre flock to every year. It takes place at Planet Bluegrass, a historic venue located in the small town of Lyons, Colorado. Other popular music events like the Rocky Mountain Folks Festival and the Telluride Bluegrass Festival also take place at this site. The beautiful St. Vrain River, with its incredible rocky cliffs, provides the perfect backdrop for the event.
In late July, the town comes alive with world-class live music, lots of good food and a truly unique vibe. The festival features performances by bluegrass legends as well as new, upcoming local artists.
It was started by legendary singer Bill Monroe and other members of the Colorado Bluegrass Music Society. Artists like Sam Bush Bluegrass Band, The Infamous Stringdusters, The Wilders, Bearfoot Bluegrass, Single Malt Brothers Band, Rhonda Vincent & The Rage, Del McCoury Band, Peter Rowan, Hot Rize, and Yonder Mountain String Band have performed at the event in the past.
RockyGrass is one of the oldest music festivals of its kind, steeped in history. As a result, it makes it to the bucket lists of bluegrass music lovers from all over the world.
Patrons can choose between single-day or three-day General Admission tickets. Prices range from $75 for a one-day pass to $175 for a three-day pass. Tickets are limited to a maximum of four per customer. Once you make your purchase, your passes will be emailed to you. You also have the option of picking them up at the venue.
RockyGrass Festival is free for children under the age of 12 when they are accompanied by a ticket-holding adult. For more information and updates, take a look at the official festival website. Camping and parking passes can also be purchased on the site.
The town of Lyons is about an hour away from major cities like Denver and Fort Collins. The nearest city is Boulder, which is less than 30 minutes away. RockyGrass Festival takes place at the Planet Bluegrass Ranch which is just off U.S. Hwy. 36, making it easy to reach. It is walking distance from Downtown Lyons. Travelers can stay up to date with road and weather conditions via resources presented through the Colorado Department of Transportation.
Parking is available in designated lots close to the venue for a nominal fee. Guests are requested to avoid parking in residential areas. Once you reach the entrance, festival staff will be available to direct you to your spot. If you plan on camping in your RV, you’ll need to purchase a vehicle pass rather than a parking pass.
Busses operated by the Denver-Boulder area bus system make frequent drop-offs to the festival site. There will also be several privately run shuttles operating on the days of the event. The region has some great bike trails. So another option is to park your rig at your campsite and ride your bike to the venue.
Camping is available right on the festival grounds at the fields on the north and south sides. The north side accommodates only tents while the south side has room for both tents and vehicles. These sites come with permanent restrooms, toilets, and showers. In order to camp in your RV at the festival, you’ll need a vehicle pass as well as individual camping passes.
In addition to the onsite campground, the organizers work with a few other campgrounds that are walking distance from the venue. These are accessible with a large RV and come with facilities like permanent bathrooms, porta-potties, and waterfront access. Full hookups are usually available at least one of these campgrounds, which may be located about two blocks from the festival venue.
The grounds are reasonably sized and easy to navigate on foot at the RockyGrass Festival. Bicycles, skateboards, and motorized vehicles of any kind will not be allowed in the staging areas. Most parts of the venue are accessible, but there are a few natural terrain areas which can be challenging to navigate if it rains.
The venue is at a high altitude of almost 6,000 feet. This means that the weather can change suddenly and unexpectedly. So go prepared with warm clothing and carry some rain gear. During the day, most festival-goers will be dressed casually in shorts, jeans, t-shirts and summer dresses.
Make sure your camping gear is waterproof and update your RVs first aid kit before starting on your trip. On the days of the festival, carry a small bag packed with essentials like sunscreen, a portable charger and hand sanitizer. You can take in a small amount of food and non-alcoholic drinks. These must be sealed upon entry, and glass containers will not be permitted.
Drinking water stations will be located throughout the venue. Carry a refillable water bottle and stay hydrated at all times. You’re going to be at a high altitude, and the sun can be harsh, so be sure to wear plenty of sunscreen and a hat. Keep your phone charged and designate a common meeting point for your group.
Open flames of any kind will not be allowed on the festival campgrounds. This is the case even if there is no fire ban in effect. Bring convenient, ready-to-cook meals and packaged snacks. If you need to stock up on supplies, there is a grocery store as well as a health food store less than a mile from the venue. Generators have been allowed in the past, but you will want to have your water and fuel tanks full upon arrival.
There are several restaurants, cafes and coffee shops ten minutes away from the festival grounds. You’ll also find some great breweries in the area where you can try some excellent local craft beers, cocktails and delicious wines. Guests can also explore other cuisines like Japanese, Polish, and Thai in the area of Lyons.
RockyGrass Festival organizers make sure that the food at the festival represents the best of what the region has to offer. Some of the vendors have been a part of the event for many years. The food is definitely one of the highlights and event regulars look forward to experiencing the same familiar tastes year after year.
Security personnel and volunteers will be conducting bag and vehicle checks at the RockyGrass Festival entrances. Weapons of any kind, drugs, and alcohol are prohibited. If these items are found in your possession, they will be confiscated, and further action may be taken. Harassment of any kind will not be tolerated, and guests are requested to report any incidents to festival staff.
Since the venue is high up in the mountains, the weather can be quite unpredictable. It may be warm and sunny one minute and pouring with rain the next. While the temperature is typically in the high-80s during the day, it can fall to the mid-60s at night. Be sure to come adequately prepared so you and your crew can enjoy camping outdoors.
Basic first aid facilities will be available on site. You can flag down one of the festival staff members if you need assistance. There is a pharmacy less than a mile away from the venue and two hospitals nearby. Medically necessary items will be allowed into the site after an inspection at the gates.