Sunshine, Hula Hoopes & High Altitude Tunes Bluegrass is Coming to Town! It’s not a stretch when I say that guests flocking to Natural Retreat’s Teton Springs Lodge & Spa the second weekend of August are headed to the Grand Targhee Bluegrass Festival. It’s always a diverse audience filling lobby in this quiet boutique hotel in Victor, Idaho; parents with kids in tow, girlfriends looking to unveil to the world their latest butterfly tattoo and seniors looking for a quiet refuge when the day’s music is done. Teton Springs Lodge and Spa is the place to stay.
Even the guys filling the resort’s cabins for the weekend planning a golf-filled weekend at the Headwaters Club often find themselves trading in their collared shirt for tie dye or a crisp cowboy shirt, capping their day on the links with a performance or two at one of the country’s best Bluegrass gatherings. Teton Springs Lodge golf Members of this audience come in all shapes and sizes and everyone is simply happy to just be together in the cool mountain air. Sunsets are brilliant at 8,000 feet and the temps drop blissfully at night so pack accordingly.
It’s hard to believe the Grand Targhee Bluegrass Festival is celebrating its 27th year. However, what’s not surprising is the staying power and continual growth of this magnificent gathering in the Teton Mountains. Slated for August 8-10, this festival, like so many great cultural phenomenons, enjoyed humble beginnings. Back in the stone age of the late 80′s, entertainers played under an unassuming picnic tent and festival goers sat on hay bales swaying to the bluesy sounds that filled the mountain air. I remember the first few festivals when there were fewer than a few hundred ticket holders, and the Targhee staff worked feverishly to get it right. They did indeed get it right, every year adding some new dimension to the festival to keep it vibrant. It was a learning curve that propelled this festival’s growth thru the roof.
What really changed the entire scope of this once intimate affair happened when Targhee moved to their permanent festival site. Located just a few steps from the resort’s base village center, the venue is now perched proudly on what serves as Targhee’s beginner ski slope and tubing park. It’s hard to imagine while sitting back and listening to the country’s most prolific Blue Grass stars that this site, now blanketed with wild flowers, is buried with Mother Nature’s finest. It’s almost as if this snow sliding slope was designed with festivals on the
brain; the stage is grand and the setting a natural amphitheater with every seat affording front row status. In fact, the further up on the hill one plunks their belongings, the better the music sounds.
There’s great food & drink courtesy of local vendors and tons of stuff for the kids to do. But there’s no getting bored for the adults with the likes of legendary Sam Bush, Nickel Creek, Tim O’Brien & Darrell Scott, all playing to the appreciative crowd… and that’s just the tip of the talent iceberg once can expect at the Targhee Bluegrass Festival.
When you’re ready for some quiet time and a reprieve from the sun, hop into the Stillwaters Spa & Salon at Teton Springs for a massage, facial or perhaps a mini Mani or Pedi (after all, you will be unleashing those toes for the world to see Bluegrass weekend!). . And, as good as the festival vendor grub is, nothing beats resting your back in a plush chair, slicing into a fat juicy New York steak & sipping a glass of Idaho’s best chardonnay. The Range at Teton Springs is at your disposal for just that. Or, savor a picnic lunch lakeside with all the fixins.
Indulge all your senses with a visit to Teton Springs this summer!