October 11-14, 2012 – Kaeppners Woods – Logan, OH

By Ryan Neeley exclusively for Appalachian Jamwich

Festival camping season is just about over, but there’s one last wristband that you’ll want to secure to that arm – The Family Roots Fall Festival in Logan, OH at Kaeppners Woods.   Here’s everything you need to know about the second annual four-day, three-night festival, which is being put on by BeeRaye Productions October 11th through 14th.

THE VENUE – After having the festival at Smoke Rise Ranch Resort in Glouster, OH last year, organizers BeeRae Productions have moved the fest. to family-owned Kaeppners Woods in Logan, OH, which was also the site of Papadosio’s Rootwire Festival in August.   With over 200 acres and plenty of shady spots to beat the October heat (LOL), there’s lots of space to stretch out and camp in the woods.   NOT A MOWED DOWN CORN FIELD!    Open fields and deep woodlands to explore, a nice pond to sit by, and a shower house to hose yourself off after raging all night!   A large parking lot is available with taxi service to make the trek a little more bearable – PLEASE CARPOOL if you can, even if that one friend annoys you – it helps the venue and environment.   Gates open at noon on Thursday, 10/11 for FREE early-bird camping but be sure to bring everything you need as they are stating that there is NO REENTRY unless it’s an emergency.  You won’t want to leave because according to Brian of BeeRae, “There will be music from open on Thursday to close on Sunday, and you’re permitted to camp Sunday night, too.”   So don’t run like an antelope out of the joint on Sunday morning.  Fires are permitted but you cannot bring firewood – it will be available for purchase – this is due to an invasive beetle species that has wreaked havoc on Ash trees in Ohio, the Emerald Ash Borer – not because the venue’s trying to empty your wallet.    They are asking you to please leave your pets at home (except service animals of course, yes, goats too), BYOB but no GLASS bottles or NITROUS (sorry Mafiosos), and all children must be accompanied by a (sober) parent or guardian.   See the site for more details and rules.

VENDORS –   There will be plenty of food choices for vegans, vegetarians and carnivores – As Bob Marley would say, keep “dem belly full” so you can rage one last weekend this year!   Also look for artists, clothing vendors, super heady mineral/gem and pin vendors, Jerry (one of the top glass blowers in the east that will be featured in App Jam in the coming months) and plenty of other goodies to keep you happy all weekend!   Get your Christmas presents for your heady friends taken care of early!

ART/ACTIVITIES:   Family Roots Fall Fest Art gallery will be available for artists to set up their installations of live paint.   Be sure to bring your gear and a few canvases or a sketch book and let the music inspire you to create a masterpiece!  If you’ve never tried this, it’s highly liberating and you’ll be amazed at the art you can create while being inspired by the surroundings and music!   The more the merrier!   All talent levels are welcome – don’t be shy – be a part of making it happen!  There will also be “headphone dance party” – Phish vs. The Dead – with headphones and a large screen set up playing Dead or Phish, a costume masquerade party, and family activities/kids area.  “It is called FAMILY Roots,” festival orgaziners went on to say, “There will be areas where you can take your kids to keep them busy.”   Kind of like a “Keep your rage to a minimum” area, which can be nice, ya know?

MUSIC:  The last big throw-down of the camping season!  There are over 30 acts over four days, and there’s something for every musical taste.  Unfortunately Bill Kreutzmann’s 7 Walkers had to cancel due to illness, but Perpetual Groove was added and the lineup is still chock full of nastiness:

RUMPKE MOUNTAIN BOYS – Cincinnati bluegrass favorites Rumpke Mountain Boys have taken the region by storm over the past few years with their signature sound of “infamous trashgrass.”   But there’s nothing trashy about these boys – They’ve made legions of fans everywhere they go, most times pickin’ till dawn on their legendary “campfire tours” where THEY come to YOUR campsite.   In speaking with their manager Huck recently (while they were playing in a driving rainstorm at 3am under a tarp for 45 ragers), “They’d rather come up and hang out with the people and play bluegrass around the fire all night – not go back to a hotel or stay in VIP.”   And every time I’ve seen them they’ve done just that and more, delivering a refreshing set of originals, old bluegrass favorites and a few covers of everything from the Grateful Dead to Tom Waites.   Fresh off their first festival, named Snugglefest, and gearing up for a tour in support of their new album coming out November 2nd, Rumpke Mountain Boys are one band that you WILL see on main stages around the country next year.  You won’t want to miss this high-energy quartet’s set of infamous trashgrass.   Bring a comfy pair of kicks or better yet, just go barefoot!


NEW RIDERS OF THE PURPLE SAGE – Originally formed in the psychedelic era of the late 60’s with Jerry Garcia playing steel guitar, Mickey Hart on drums, John Dawson (acoustic guitar) and David Nelson (guitar/vocals), NRPS has evolved over the years, but original member Nelson has recruited some amazing musicians like Buddy Cage, a seasoned pedal steel player who replaced Garcia in 1971 and Michael Falzarno, former Hot Tuna guitarist.   NRPS has a country feel with jamband roots, and showcases some fantastic steel pedal work –  David Nelson is a legend every GD fan should see.

JERRY GARCIA BAND – Melvin Seals played with Jerry Garcia for over two decades, and this recording artist, producer and performer is an absolute BEAST on the Hammond B-3 organ.  In a recent interview with Appalachian Jamwich (coming to the website soon), Melvin stated, “It’s amazing to look out into the crowd and see old friends that have been coming to see us for years next to 16 year old kids, and the younger ones know all the words to the songs and sing along.  Jerry’s music transcends time.”   With Jimmy Tebeau and Pete Lavezzoli of the band The Schwag making up part of the band, JGB has been “the keeper of the flame”, keeping true to Garcia’s prolific solo career while putting their own soul and funk into the songs.  Seals is a master on the keys, and his soulful voice and energy-filled performances will have you beaming.  Don’t be surprised if you want to give Melvin a big bear hug after the show.

CONSPIRATOR – Aron Magner and Marc Brownstein of Disco Biscuit fame along with DJ producer DJ Omen have taken Conspirator to new heights in 2012, appearing at almost every major festival in the east including Catskill Chill, Camp Bisco, Electric Forest, Ultra music festival and more.  This livetronica group defies genre – exploring electronic music in new ways, slipping between house, electro, thumping bass and throbbing drums.   Be sure to get hydrated before they take the stage – trust me – you’ll thank me later – you won’t want to take your eyes off of these guys.

BOOMBOX Zion Godchaux and Russ Randolph make up this power-duo – Godchaux, son of former Grateful Dead members Keith and Donna, plays psychedelic guitar riffs while Randolph mixes to create a multi-track platform with a signature funk-filled backbeat and psychedelic house sounds.  Plus Godchaux rocks the best fedora and feather boa in the game today.

zion godchaux of boombox

PERPETUAL GROOVE – Athens, GA has been a hotbed of the music scene for over two decades, and a recent lineup adjustment adding keyboardist John Hruby has breathed new life into this high energy band that has performed at festivals throughout the summer – All Good, Vibes, Wakarusa, Bonnaroo, High Sierra and their own festival –Amberland.  If you’ve seen them before, you need to see them NOW with keys – It’s got a new flavor that’ll get your feet shuffling and stompin.

THE ARK BAND Columbus Ohio reggae brothers Terry and Eustace Bobb head up this crisp band with inspirational high energy performances that will make you want to book at trip to Kingston mid-set.  Their songs express love, peace and togetherness and you’ll be hugging your neighbor by the end of their set.

OTHER BANDS – There are a number of super artists and bands on the bill that I couldn’t fit into this, including a who’s who in the budding Ohio music scene – Jones for Revival, Subterranean House Band,  Jahman Braman, Elemental Groove Theory, Blue Moon Soup, Aliver Hall, The Cliftones and Pharaoh Loosey.   Also on the bill are Marion, IN group Glowstik Willy, Moogatu, Maui Pranksters, Mike Perkins, Boogie Matrix, EP3, and Heady Ruxpin among others.

From the looks of the lineup and based on the time everyone had last year, Family Roots Fall Festival promises one last weekend to get together to camp and rage all night in a friendly safe environment surrounded by beautiful crisp autumn leaves changing their color, family, friends, and one of the better musical lineups at a festival this fall.  RAY JOHN will be there – WILL YOU?

4 day General Admission – $80 presale – $100 gate price

Sat/Sun GA – $60 presale – $75 gate price

RV PASS – ADD $125


Kaeppners Woods 34070 Sutton Road  Logan, OH 43138