OYC NEWS Bluegrass Island Festival, 2023

Nov 19, 2023 | Area Info, Life at Albemarle Plantation

by Susan Burgess 

The annual Bluegrass Island Festival was again held this October at the beautiful Roanoke Island Festival Park in Manteo, NC. Overlooking miles of sparkling waters, this special 22-acre site is host to a yearly musical celebration of bluegrass music. 

The typical bluegrass band consists of a mandolin, banjo, fiddle, bass, and guitar. In addition to their amazing pickin’ skills, the musicians provide outstanding vocals at an energy level that you have to see and hear to believe. 

So, what is the level of talent at the Bluegrass Island Festival in little old Manteo? Let me share a quick story. Last summer we were in Nashville for my husband Bob’s annual Army reunion. As usual, we went to the Grand Ole Opry. Imagine our happy surprise when we saw the band, Appalachian Road Show, on the Opry Stage, and who we loved last year in Manteo. 

An extra day was added to this year’s Festival, and the annual headliner, Rhonda Vincent and the Rage, performed on Thursday and, by the way, Rhonda is also a member of the Grand Ole Opry. A highlight of Saturday’s show was the Dan Tyminski Band. Who is Dan Tyminski you might wonder? Remember the George Clooney movie, “Oh Brother Where are Thou?” Dan was the voice of George Clooney singing “I’m a Man of Constant Sor-row” in the film. Of course Dan sang it for us during his great set. 

Three cruising boats from the Osprey Yacht Club attended this year’s festival: Andiamo (Lois and Charlie Pencinger), My Girl (Elana and Jock Muir), and Tide Traveler (Susan and Bob Burgess). In addition, we ran into several AP residents who drove out and spent the night at the beach after the show. 

So, again, the festival treated us to some excellent musicianship, and I hope y’all get out there next year! 

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