I could help but think of how I should have been selling my new beard oil at the the Sugar Maple Traditional Music Festival last night. So. Many. Beards.
The Sugar Maple Festival is my very favorite event in Madison. It happens once a year at Lake Farm County Park and you can still get a ticket for today from 12-6. Tickets at the door are $25 for a one day pass if you couldn't plan ahead this year. I like to pick up a two-day ticket in advance from the Willy St. Co-op or $35 for two days of incredible, eclectic, well-curated traditional music and dancing! The music is paid for, the dancing is spontaneous. That's what makes it so great. Just check out this incredible hula-hooper!
The Sugar Maple Festival is completely family friendly. No need to plan ahead much. Bring a blanked, a high or low chair or just set in the grass, it's really all just fine. Your kids can play in the giant sand box/volleball court right next to the tent and if you don't want to carry in food, there are inexpensive and excellent food carts including tacos and ice cream, just on the other side of the volleyball court. Behind the volleyball court is an excellent playground.
There is one main tent for music. I cuddled up with my wine, chips and salsa and watermelon and enjoyed an amazing night on my own listening to my music that speaks to my soul. I always run into good friends at this festival and we have a chance to catch up in an un-rushed way. There's just no way I'd rather spend an evening.
If you'd like to extend the festivities, you can camp about 500m from the main stage with about 20 other tents that also love traditional music. Do beware that they may keep the community campfire going late into the night with music and laughter.
If you need a break at any time during the evening, you can take a walk to sit on a bench and watch the lake. There is also a children's tent with children's activities and a second tent with fiddle lessons and David Landau, Madison-family children's rock star!
I can't say enough good things about this festival. It's good people, good music, and always a good time.