It was a blast interviewing folk music greats Jay Ungar and Molly Mason and getting a tour of the newly opened Ashokan Center for the February 2013 issue of Chronogram. A beatific haven of music, dance, nature, and crafts, the site has been in operation for more than 35 years and regularly presents jubilant gatherings designed to appeal to every age group. One such event is this month’s Summer Hoot festival, which is being hosted by area roots duo Mike and Ruthy.
Celebrating music, food, and community, the three-day, family-friendly program will feature live performances by, among others, Pete Seeger, Natalie Merchant, the Dirt Farmer Band, Dan Bern, A.C. Newman, the Wiyos, Elizabeth Mitchell and Dan Zanes, and of course Mike and Ruthy and Jay Ungar and Molly Mason. Also scheduled is a screening of Ain’t in It for My Health, a new documentary film about the late local legend Levon Helm. On-grounds camping and lodging is available.
“The Hoot is a unique celebration at the crossroads of music and nature,” says Ruthy, the daughter of Ungar. “It’s a fundraiser for the Ashokan Center’s incredible outdoor education programs for children that foster a deep love and respect for the Earth. In our music we draw great inspiration from their work and from the majestic beauty of the 374-acre site.” For a taste of that music, watch this clip of Mike and Ruthy and Jay Unger and Molly Mason live:
The Summer Hoot festival will take place August 23 through August 25 at the Ashokan Center in Olivebridge, NY. For tickets, a performance schedule, and more information, visit Homeofthehoot.com.