Back Home Festival: The Free Festival That’s Capturing Hearts


In just four short years, New Martinsville, West Virginia’s Back Home Festival has become the premier admission-free festival on the East Coast. The festival has hosted a bevy of Grammy Award-winning bluegrass artists such as Del McCoury, The Steeldrivers and Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper.

But, the festival is much more than a bluegrass festival.

At the time of their 2019 Back Home Festival appearance, The Allman Betts Band had the #1 rock ‘n’ roll album in the nation.

One of 2020’s headliners, Melvin Seals & JGB, will be joined by newest addition John Kadlecik, who is an alum of both Furthur and Dark Star Orchestra. The Back Home Festival is also a place where many collaborations take place. In 2019, Billy Strings and Michael Cleveland shared a stage for the first time ever.

Situated in the heart of downtown New Martinsville, the Back Home Festival has gained a reputation as one of the most organized and welcoming festivals in the nation. The quaint river town truly rolls out the red carpet for festival-goers. Tent camping at the New Martinsville marina is free of charge and only a block from the main stage area of the festival.

Late-night silent discos are held on the courthouse steps with psychedelic Appalachian band KR-3 providing the jams. Eclectic vendors line Main Street with everything from custom tie-dyes to beautiful paintings.

The festival also boasts a fantastic variety of food vendors and adult beverage choices, which are all reasonably priced unlike many other venues today.

The goal of the festival’s organizers, the Wetzel County Convention & Visitors Bureau, is to draw tourists into their county and keep them coming back for more year after year. Their mission has been an overwhelming success as the Back Home Festival has put the small community of 4,600 people on the radar of music lovers everywhere.

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