Del McCoury, Asleep at the Wheel to headline the 2017 Delaware Valley Bluegrass Festival

 It's a very relaxed atmosphere at the DelVal Bluegrass Festival. You are welcome to sit in any chair until the owner comes back. (Howard Pitkow/for Newsworks, 2016 file photo)

It's a very relaxed atmosphere at the DelVal Bluegrass Festival. You are welcome to sit in any chair until the owner comes back. (Howard Pitkow/for Newsworks, 2016 file photo)

Get ready to pick out the jams, bluegrass fans. The Delaware Valley Bluegrass Festival returns to the Salem County Fairgrounds for its 46th year this Labor Day Weekend.

Winner of the 2016 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) “Event of the Year” award, the three-day festival features some of the genre’s top musicians.

Bluegrass legend, Del McCoury will be among this year’s 20 live acts. McCoury, a two-time Grammy winning guitarist and vocalist, will headline Saturday’s concert performances.  Asleep at the Wheel, the nine-time Grammy award-winning western swing band, will headline Friday’s performances.

Returning this year will be festival favorites The Gibson Brothers and Blue Highway, plus Charm City Junction. Other scheduled artists include Junior Sisk, Flatt Lonesome, Becky Buller, The Grascals, and Tuba Skinny. 

Of course, the chance to jam with other roots music enthusiasts is another big draw.

Heidi Olson will be back to host the Wernick Method Jam Class from 10 a.m. until noon each day of the festival. Tickets must be bought separately from festival admission and cost $75 for the entire series or $30 for a single class.

Novice pickers can get in on the fun with the return of Jam Central Station, a place dedicated to beginners who want to meet up.

Attendees just looking to kick up their heels can join the clogging workshops with FiddleKicks on Friday and Saturday at 3 p.m.

The festival is family-friendly, so bring the kids. A children’s stage will have live entertainment all afternoon on Friday and Saturday. 

Young musicians can enroll in the Kids Academy for five sessions of two-hour long music instruction for fiddle, mandolin, banjo, resonator guitar and bass. Lessons are open to kids ages 6 to 18-years and cost $25.

Weekend-long festival passes cost $110 for adults, $95 for seniors and $60 for students, ages 12 to 16 years (children under age 12 enter for free with a paying adult.) Single day tickets are also available.

Weekend ticket holders are entitled to camp on the festival grounds for free.  

Pet owners please note: though leashed dogs technically may attend, it is probably best to leave your furry friend at home. With the exception of service animals, dogs are not permitted at any concert or in the food areas. Even in the camping area, they must be accompanied by a human and leashed at all times or crated. There is also a very strict two-complaints-and-you’re-out barking policy.   

Friday, Sept. 1, and Saturday, Sept. 2, 10 a.m. to 2 a.m.; Sunday, Sept., 5, 11 a.m to 7 p.m. – 725 Rte. 40, Pilesgrove Twp., N.J.

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