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Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival

Updated on February 27, 2014

A Big Slice of Americana Pie

This article features the Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival. This festival ran for 10 years in a small town in northern California and, unfortunately, it has ended. A small number of dedicated business professionals did all the work to keep this event moving forward each year and nobody was found to take their place when they "retired" so the event has sadly passed into history. I will keep this article active as a memorial to the event and to portray a beautiful slice of rural Americana. I will be featuring some of my bluegrass photography to give you a taste of the Scott Valley festival.

I was not officially associated with the Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival but I became a fan and something like the unofficial photographer for the event. I gave the promoters my pictures to help promote the event and have even started making posters for them. I also made my photos available to the great bands that perform there. I was always amazed that they are able to pull such great bands into this largely undiscovered back country event. I have an entire gallery on my fine art website dedicated to bluegrass and it includes photographs of the event since I first attended in 2007. You will find that gallery here. If you play the sub-galleries as a slideshow you will hear some great background music.

By the way, the festival was also a scholarship fundraiser for local high school students who want to further their education. Attendees not only had a great time but they were contributing to a great cause.

Etna, California
Etna, California

Where In The World Is Scott Valley?

That's a good question. Scott Valley is a valley in Siskiyou County in far northern California. The bluegrass festival was in the town of Etna which is a slice of classic rural Americana (see photo on right). It's a town with a lot of history and a fun place to visit. In fact, all of Siskiyou County has a lot to offer with everything from shopping to hiking, camping, hunting, fishing, skiing, etc.. The county seat is a town called Yreka and that happens to be where I went to high school. It used to have a bakery which was called "Yreka Bakery" (of course) but it's a palindrome, that is if you spell it backwards, it's still "Yreka Bakery." If you had read my book, "Life at The End of a Dirt Road" you would already know this.

I love palindromes, try this one, "A man a plan a canal Panama." Or how about, "Name no one man." "Madam, I'm Adam." But I digress, back to bluegrass.

If you enter "Etna, CA" into Google maps or any map website you will find it with no problem. If you can find Etna, you can find the Scott Valley Bluegrass festival.

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A great sampling of bluegrass classics.

 
High Lonesome - The Story of Bluegrass Music
High Lonesome - The Story of Bluegrass Music

Explore the roots of bluegrass with some of the original artists.

 
Bluegrass Number One Hits
Bluegrass Number One Hits

A fine sampling of some bluegrass favorites.

 

Jammin' on Main

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

The festival itself was on Saturday and Sunday of the third weekend in July each year but if you came early could catch "Jammin' on Main" on Friday night. Main Street in downtown Etna was blocked off on the Friday evening before the festival and there was a wonderful bluegrass jam session. It started around 6:00 p.m. and people come from all over with their instruments or just to watch, sing along or listen. Often some of the professional band members would join in and everybody had a great time. Everyone was welcomed to play along or sing or just watch. The jammers tended to break into small groups that sang and played together surrounded by on-lookers who watched, danced or even joined in the singing. Everybody had a good time at Jammin' in Main.

Following are some images of Jammin' on Main in downtown Etna on the eve of the bluegrass festival.

Jammin' on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

Jammin' on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

Jammin' on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

Jammin' on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

Jammin' on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

Jammin' on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

This image ended up as part of an interesting local newspaper article.

Jammin on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

Jammin' on Main Image

Jammin' on Main
Jammin' on Main

Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival Schedule

2012 POSTER AND SCHEDULE
2012 POSTER AND SCHEDULE

One of the fun things at the festival was the workshops. You could attend a workshop to have one of the professionals teach you to play a bluegrass instrument, it could be the guitar, banjo, mandolin, dobro or fiddle. It varied a little each year. There were usually singing workshops where you could learn how to sing harmony parts or just improve your singing.

2013 Schedule - 10TH ANNUAL!

2013 Poster
2013 Poster

Here's the poster I made for the 2013 Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival. It was the 10th and final festival and there were some great bands there as usual. CLICK ON THE POSTER TO GO TO THE DOWNLOADABLE FULL RESOLUTION VERSION OF THIS POSTER.

The Bands

Somehow the festival committee managed to bring in great bands from around the nation every year. I considered the Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival to be one of the great "undiscovered" festivals. The festival was well attended but I say undiscovered because there was always room for more. Attendees usually came from northern California and Southern Oregon but some came from much farther. The setting was in a beautiful park and there was room for trailer or RV camping with additional lodging in town.

The bands were varied and sometimes played a few tunes that weren't quite bluegrass but it was always a pleasure to hear professional musicians performing live. One year there was a bluegrass band (G2) from Sweden. If you haven't heard someone say "you all" with a Swedish accent you have missed some fun.

Following are some images of just a few of the recent bands at the Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival.

The Bands Image

Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival Bands
Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival Bands

The Bands Image - Anderson Family Bluegrass Band

Anderson Family Bluegrass Band
Anderson Family Bluegrass Band

The Bands Image - Susie Glaze & The Hilonesome Band

Susie Glaze and the Hilonesom Band
Susie Glaze and the Hilonesom Band

The Bands Image - Northern Departure

Northern Departure
Northern Departure

The Bands Image - Mark Phillips & IIIrd Generation Bluegrass Band

Mark Phillips and IIIrd Generation Bluegrass Band
Mark Phillips and IIIrd Generation Bluegrass Band

The Bands Image - Monroe Crossing

Monroe Crossing
Monroe Crossing

The Bands Image - Snap Jackson & The Knock on Wood Players

Snap Jackson & The Knock on Wood Players
Snap Jackson & The Knock on Wood Players

My Other Photography Websites

I have a fine art photography website where you can view my diverse photographic interests. I have a gallery dedicated to giraffes, vintage vehicles and buildings, galleries for landscapes, waterfalls, birds, wildlife, painterly photography and a variety of other specialized subjects. Mount Shasta and various northern California scenes are prominent in many of my galleries. Most of the galleries have background music if you play them as a slideshow. This allows you to kick back and listen to the music as the images flow by. Whether you are looking for some interesting images or looking to purchase some photographic art, I think you will enjoy your visit to Chuck Nelson Photography.

I also have a Zazzle website where you can purchase a wide variety of products featuring my digital art and photography. You will find it here.

My Other Articles on Squidoo

I have written a number of articles on a wide variety of subjects here on Squidoo. You will find information and links to all my Squidoo articles on my profile page here.

I'd Love to Hear From You

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    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Lynda Makara: It is and thank you

    • Lynda Makara profile image

      Lynda Makara 5 years ago from California

      This looks like a neat little town. Nice photos!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @flicker lm: Thank you flicker...yes...it's a lovely thing.

    • flicker lm profile image

      flicker lm 5 years ago

      I loved all the photos, especially of the young folks making making music.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Rebeljohn: Thank you Rebeljohn...I loved your bluegrass lens!

    • Rebeljohn profile image

      Rebeljohn 5 years ago

      Great article i really enjoyed reading it.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Edutopia: Don't let it heal...keep pickin'

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @casquid: Any friend of Patsy Cline is a friend of mine.

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      Edutopia 5 years ago

      Good job on the lens. There is always some good time for noodlin' on banjos every now and then.

    • casquid profile image

      casquid 5 years ago

      You may find this hard to believe, but I am a Patsy Cline fan for life! My second husband loved Bluegrass music. Never heard of this festival. I did spend 3 years in the Black Hills of South Dakota attending the Sturgis Rally Week (Harley Davidson). Plenty of Blue Grass there. You can say, I'm well rounded (no pun intended).

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @tebor79: Assuming a certain level of skill...I would agree.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @PNWtravels: Thank you Vicki...it is an enjoyable experience.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Great lens.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Thank you

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      tebor79 5 years ago

      Nothing more pleasant to the ears than the sounds of a Banjo.

    • PNWtravels profile image

      Vicki Green 5 years ago from Wandering the Pacific Northwest USA

      I enjoyed the great photos and the Scott Valley Bluegrass Festival sounds like a lot of fun. Congratulations on a well-deserved LOTD.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @tricomanagement: Thank you

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @tricomanagement: Thanks...hope to see you there.

    • tricomanagement profile image

      tricomanagement 5 years ago

      Really great photos - great effects on some We will be going this year to listen to the music - see you there!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Johanna Eisler: You would love it!

    • Johanna Eisler profile image

      Johanna Eisler 5 years ago

      Wow! I wanna GO!!!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @norma-holt: Thank you so much...nothing like a squid blessing and digital hug to reward one's work.

    • norma-holt profile image

      norma-holt 5 years ago

      Another wonderful lens and great photography. Congrats on LOTD - it was just a matter of time. *Blessed* and featured on Squidoo LOTD Lenses and also on Blessed by Skiesgreen, Hugs

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      Bill 5 years ago from Gold Coast, Australia

      Looks like a lot of fun. I love small music festivals. I go to one myself each year and built a lens about it too. I will be in California in March and had originally planned to travel through that region, but am only going as far north as Lake Tahoe now. Congrats on LOTD.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @DebMartin: Thank you DebMartin

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      DebMartin 5 years ago

      Beautiful lens with some great photos. Nice!

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Thanks rauspitz

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Excellent photos and lens. Congratulations on your LOTD!

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @zav: Thank you zav...I've never seen a video of Jammin' on main. My camera will take video but without good audio I'll stick to stills. Good idea though.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @zav: Thank you zav...I've never seen a video of Jammin' on main. My camera will take video but without good audio I'll stick to stills. Good idea though.

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      zav 5 years ago

      Great photos and lens and I love the "Jammin on the main" idea. Do you have or know of any videos of it? Thanks

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Thank you Dave....you would enjoy!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Wow, what great images! This is such a good-looking lens. And it makes me want to attend the festival! Congrats on a well-deserved LOTD.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Bahrns: Thank you Bahrns!

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      Bahrns 5 years ago

      I've attended this festival years ago and it was all fun! Although I am not actually a fan of country life, I can assure you that the festive spirit surely hit me and I liked it.

      For the great info I will give this lens 2 thumbs up!

      Congrats for being LOTD! CHEERS!

      material handling

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @blue22d: Thank you blue22d.

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      blue22d 5 years ago

      Great lens. That looks like a lot of fun and great entertainment and on my birthday. I love that area of CA but I now live in Utah, bum!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @fugeecat lm: Thank you fugeecat. You would enjoy the visit. The lady with the instrument on her lap is playing a dobro...it's a common bluegrass instrument and has a unique sounds.

    • fugeecat lm profile image

      fugeecat lm 5 years ago

      Your photos are wonderful. I really like the one with the man playing a banjo and the woman sitting next to him with an instrument in her lap. The festival sounds like loads of fun and if I'm going to put it on my places to visit.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Beautyland: Thank you for the kind word Beautyland

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Country-Sunshine: Thank you CountrySunshine.

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      Beautyland 5 years ago

      It looks like great fun! I wish I was there! Nice, fun t-shirts too. Well done, great lens.

    • Country-Sunshine profile image

      Country Sunshine 5 years ago from Texas

      Really nice photos! Congrats on LotD!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @hirephp lm: Thank you hirephp

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Soulshine_Expressions: Thank you so much!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @modz: Thank you for the kind words modz

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @BunnyFabulous: Thank you BF!

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @fotolady49 lm: Thank you Terri! Hey everybody, fotolady49 nominated me for this LOTD and she's really good at math, check out her equation above.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @jimmyworldstar: There's quite a bit of bluegrass in CA. I didn't encounter it until after college but it's here to stay.

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      hirephp lm 5 years ago

      nice photography good lens

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @CamelliaPenny: Thank you servantofthe Lord. Hopefully you and your family can make the trip one day.

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      Soulshine_Expressions 5 years ago

      Beautiful job! Well written and beautifully illustrated with wonderful photographs! Love your Zazzle Bluegrass artwork! :)

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Hi Beau...good to hear from you. It would be fun if you could come to the festival with me some year.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @delia-delia: Thank you d-artist...I love your true story lenses.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @LoKackl: Thank you LoKackl

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @joystickenvy lm: Thank you JSE.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Vagabond17: Thank you Vagabond17

    • modz profile image

      modz 5 years ago

      This is amazing job you done here. And i would like to say Congratulations on LOTD!

    • BunnyFabulous profile image

      BunnyFabulous 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Gorgeous photography! Congrats on LOTD!

    • profile image

      jimmyworldstar 5 years ago

      Wow I never would've expected to find bluegrass in California of all places. Looks like they have a good scene over there.

    • fotolady49 lm profile image

      fotolady49 lm 5 years ago

      CONGRATULATIONS! Well deserved for such a SUPER lens :)

      Bluegrass music + photography = HEAVEN!

    • fotolady49 lm profile image

      fotolady49 lm 5 years ago

      @CNelson01: I certainly will look you up if Lord willing, I am able to get out to it before I leave this planet....

    • CamelliaPenny profile image

      Perrin 5 years ago from South Carolina

      You make me wish I could travel to California . . . I love bluegrass!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      great lens grandpa!!! i loved seeing the posters especially the shirts about no banjo playin brought a grin to my face...congratulations on the LotD and may many more come round your way...

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Great pics!! Even greater music!!

    • delia-delia profile image

      Delia 5 years ago

      Congratulations on LOTD! Great Lens! I have been to Scott Valley CA.but never to this event...however I have been to a few bluegrass festivals in Missouri.

    • LoKackl profile image

      LoKackl 5 years ago

      I love Bluegrass sounds! Great photos, too. Blessed. Congratulations on LOTD!

    • joystickenvy lm profile image

      joystickenvy lm 5 years ago

      Grats on your LOTD. Scott Valley is too far for me to visit, but I used to attend several bluegrass festivals a year when I lived in NC. They're always a good time.

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      Vagabond17 5 years ago

      This was really cool! Good job :)! I love music and photography myself.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @kathysart: Thank you so much!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @kathysart: Thank you Kathy...your art is wonderful.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @agoofyidea: Thank you agoofyidea. I grew up in the Shasta Valley...one valley to the east of Scott Valley but visited often.

    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 5 years ago

      Ohh I forgot.. angel blessed!

    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 5 years ago

      I love all the instruments! In Hawaii where I lived until recently, most of the children play the ukulele. You will often see them in the back of a pickup with one playing away. Some of the pics reminded me of that.. the ones with kids. It is a wonderful thing to pass on the beauty of making music.

      My father in law LOVED bluegrass and used to go to a fiddlers craft fair selling my pottery for me years ago. Lots of memories resurfaced with this lovely lens. Smile.

      Congrats on lens of the day!! ~Kathy

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Hey Tim...good to hear from you. Didn't we dig a coyote den one night?

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Thank you Milanho

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Auntiekatkat: Thank you Auntiekitkat

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @SusanDeppner: Thank you Susan52

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      agoofyidea 5 years ago

      Congratulations on LOTD! This was a fun lens. I loved your pictures. I had friends in college who lived in Scott Valley. I think it would be a great event to visit. Blessed!

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @stacy mcdaniel: Thank you Stacy.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @ScrollSawChuck: Thanks Chuck....you hit the G run and I'll chord behind you.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @akumar46 lm: Thank you akumar46

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @writerkath: Thank you Kathy

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Pete Schultz: Thank you Pete...I'll keep an eye out for you

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @fullofshoes: Thank you fullofshoes

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @ViJuvenate: I'm glad you saw a bit of "home."

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @RazzbarryBreeze: Thank you RazzbarryBreeze

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @crystalwriter: Thank you crystalwriter.

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @jadehorseshoe: Thank you jadehorseshoe

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @vinc18: Thank you vinc18

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Linda BookLady: Thank you Linda....come on up the river and visit the festival this July. My wife lived in Happy Camp so I can say my wife is a "Happy Camper"

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Congrats on Lens of the Day. Great piece on Blue Grass & Siskiyou County, I grew up in the area and attended school with Chuck from the 4th grade. Been away a long time and had no idea this festival existed.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @djroll: Thank you DJ

    • CNelson01 profile image
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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @cleanyoucar: Thank you cleanyoucar.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Nice lens.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @Scarlettohairy: Thank you scarlettohairy.

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      Chuck Nelson 5 years ago from California

      @anonymous: Thank you Tipi

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      Auntiekatkat 5 years ago

      Wonderful images on this lens it captures the true joie de vie of a festival. Congratulations on getting Lens of the day.

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      Susan Deppner 5 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Outstanding! So glad to see this lens as Lens of the Day!