Remembering Sam Bush, others at FloydFest

FloydFest 2023 fell to a claim of a threat to endangered species and complaints from some area residents. Will it return next year?
Sam Bush at FloydFest (Photos and video by Doug Thompson)

This week would have been FloydFest 2023 but the annual event, planned for its new location just off U.S. 221 near Check was canceled because of purported threats to an endangered species and complaints from a handful of residents who claimed the event would destroy their way of life in the area.

Organizers say they are working to resolve the problems and will reopen in 2024.

Thousands of festival and music fans hope they will. So do businesses that will miss the spillover revenue that the festival creates with sales taxes and spending from fans who flock to the area and visit other spots in and around the county.

This would have an overdue move by FloydFest to the country where it was named. Its previous location was just over the border into Patrick County on a site just off the Blue Ridge Parkway. Even so, the spillover of revenue generated by patrons was felt and welcomed by most of the county. The move would have brought in the sales tax revenue generated on the site itself.

I covered FloydFest for 15 years for The Floyd Press and other media outlets and shot thousands of photos and many feet of video. The one above centered on the concert of Sam Bush at the festival of 2007.

FloydFest in 2018. Back when I had the energy to photograph such events.
Levon Helm at FloydFest in 2010.
Part of the enthusiastic crowd for Sam Bush
FloydFest 2014

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