WinterWonderGrass set for Stratton in December

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STRATTON — Railroad Earth, The Infamous Stringdusters and Keller & the Keels are headlining the WinterWonderGrass Festival at Stratton Mountain Resort, scheduled for December 14-16.

It's the first East Coast visit for the bluegrass and roots music event, which has roots in Steamboat Springs, Colo., and Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows in Lake Tahoe, Calif. Featuring more than 20 bluegrass and roots artists on three heated indoor and one outdoor stage, the festival will offer Vermont local brew, cider and food, organizers said.

"The inspiration behind WinterWonderGrass was to recreate the magical winter culture — ending your snow day at the base of the hill surrounded by family and friends, reminiscing about the day's turns, while sipping a beer and listening to acoustic music," festival founder Scotty Stoughton said in a prepared statement announcing the festival. "I learned to ski at Bromley, and those memories are never far from my spirit. Living in the West, I have observed the expansion of ski towns and mountains, and I have a deep desire to recapture the true essence of the sport and communities that were built around mountain adventure."

Artists scheduled to appear include Billy Strings, Fruition, Jeff Austin Band, The Larry Keel Experience, Horseshoes & Hand Grenades, and Lindsay Lou. Additional artists include the Kitchen Dwellers, Rumpke Mountain Boys, Ghost of Paul Revere, Upstate Rubdown, Jon Stickley Trio, Saints and Liars, Grant Farm, Beg, Steal or Borrow, Pickin' on the Dead, the WWG All-Stars, Bridget Law, and special guests Charlie Rose (of Elephant Revival) and Pappy Biondo.

The festival works closely with organizations that allow for it to thrive in that capacity, such as Waste-Free Earth, a full-service sustainability company that offers a broad range of services, including sustainability direction for events. "We pride ourselves in being a single-use plastic-free event, serving food and drinks only on 100 percent compostable flatware, taking the time to educate attendees on what is compostable, recyclable and landfill items," Waste-Free Earth Founder and WinterWonderGrass director of sustainability Marina McCoy said in the release. "Because of all of this effort, we average an 80-90 percent diversion rate, year after year."

To generate buzz for the event, the festival will be holding a "pop-up" event on Saturday at the Red Fox Inn at Bondville with local favorites Saints and Liars and special guest Charlie Rose. The event starts at 6 p.m. and includes Fiddlehead, Sierra Nevada and Citizen Cider specials, access to processing fee-free festival tickets and ticket giveaways.

Three-day general admission tickets prices start at $169 and VIP three-day tickets start at $339 for a limited time. Additional information can be found at www.winterwondergrass.com.

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