Suwannee Hulaween Preview

Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2014, Live Oak, FL

written by Bryan Bailey

featured image by David Lee

I have been waiting to be back at Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park for Hulaween ever since I left the grounds last year after Aura Music Festival.  I had attended the park for the first time at Hulaween 2013, and was instantly intrigued by the unique environment. It is definitely my favorite venue by far, and touches the heart of everyone who attends.  Located just north of Live Oak, Florida, and situated on the banks of historic Suwannee River, there is much to explore and experience besides just the music.

The energy of people past and present is so soaked up in everything there you can feel it all around you.  When you aren’t seeing the fantastic music on the multiple stages, there’s lots to do, like walking through and under the Spanish moss trees, or visiting the bat cave and watching them all fly in and out.  Spirit of the Suwannee happens to host the world’s largest bat house, so it’s not for the faint of heart.  You can visit little lagoon and sandy beach, or spirit lake with the Swan that lights up. There are miles of trails and plenty of opportunities to hike, and even canoe or kayak.

Photo by  David Lee

Photo by David Lee

Suwannee hosts many amazing events, such as Wanee, Suwannee River Jam, Magnoliafest, and Bear Creek, but nothing I think compares to the atmosphere of Hulaween. Mixed with everyone’s excitement, costumes and great bands they have each year, the event is a zany celebration unlike any other. I can’t wait to dress up as Hunter S. Thompson and run around with my briefcase typewriter to write up my review. Crazy thoughts of shenanigans with my friends swim in my head as I keep wishing it was the coming weekend.  I can’t wait to be reunited with my Hulaween family.

The lineup this year is stacked with talented musicians big and small. String Cheese Incident will of course be headlining the festival and playing three nights.  String Cheese fans like myself would travel anywhere to see the band, but the rest of the Hulaween lineup is icing on the cake and plenty of motivation for the 10 hour trip I will be making to the festival. I have never seen The New Deal so that will be awesome to experience the band that has been surrounded with so much hype this past summer. Since taking a hiatus in 2011, the electronic trio bounced back big this year in 2014. Big Gigantic, Thievery Corporation, and Beats Antique always get the crowd dancing, and if they’re not the audience definitely has earplugs in.

Emancipator, EOTO, and Conspirator are some more big names on the lineup that will be lending their electronic laced jams to the weekend.  Nahko and Medicine for the People has been gaining a lot of momentum with their summer tour, delivering powerful sets full of positive energy and a meaningful message.  Greensky Bluegrass and Keller Williams & Friends will add some bluegrass flavor to the fun, and there’s plenty of funky goodness to go around with names like Kung Fu, and The Soul Rebels.

A Silent Disco will also be hosting plenty of DJs in different electronic flavors and the Thursday Pre-party features Electron, Particle, Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band, and more.

 It’s a good thing that Halloween is only a little more than a week away!  Tickets are still available on the website. Can’t wait to see you all there.