In 2013, Fly Free Festival captured everything I look for in a festival: a community-driven, eco-friendly and family-oriented happening with great music and peaceful vibes. It was my favorite festival of 2013. If you know my friends and I, odds are you have heard how amazing Fly Free was. It offered fresh, funky, electronic music on beautiful rivers and fields prevalent in bonfires and get-togethers, privacy, one-of-a-kind vendors and the best family of friends you could ask for. I made friends from all across the country whom I still stay in contact with. Fly Free reminded me of the many great festivals in the Southeast and of the up-and-coming music and art the South has to offer.
As the festival moves from Adams, Tenn., to Cherokee Farms, Lafayette, Ga., Oct. 10–12, this year, I can only imagine how time has given them the opportunity to grow into something undeniably life-altering. It is simply amazing that just two of my friends, Colleen and Corey Petree in Chattanooga, have put this whole thing together yet again. Of course, “family” goes a long way, and it makes me feel special that so many of my inspirational friends from Knoxville, Nashville, Chattanooga and elsewhere have helped this work of art come to life again. Many friends have chosen to be involved after such an amazing year whether it be music, art or vending, and I myself look forward to being a part of Fly Free again.
This year, the Petrees have expanded Fly Free’s genres of music to not only funk and electronica but to bluegrass, rock, indie-rock, jam, trance-like beats and more. The 2014 lineup features Railroad Earth, The Motet, Desert Dwellers, Arpetrio, This Is Art, Dan Deacon, Skymatic, Dextrous and many others. Visual Artists include Chance Losher (Inner Ascension), Scott Moelich (Sun Beam) and Bobby Kruse. Fly Free 2014 offers yoga, live art, food and craft vendors, spontaneous dance parties, disc golf, kids tent and more. Do not forget the nightly costume themes, which were a blast last year!
“Fans this year can expect an even bigger emphasis on art as well as performance art,” says co-founder Corey Petree. “We’re organizing a Fly Free Flow Team that will be coordinating live fire and hoop performances in conjunction with the bands. This year, guests will also have a much shorter walk between the stages. We are positioning them in a way that all the action is in a relatively small area. This helps with the level of intimacy and community. Smaller bands will have a better opportunity to get noticed, and it makes it a lot easier for us to really deck out the area with art installations and create an amazing scene.”
Fly Free has once again done a great job creating a special, diverse and free world of community involvement with loving, innovative and passionately evolutionary people taking place on gorgeous Southern grounds. Not to mention that ticket prices are extremely reasonable compared to other three-day camping festivals.
“I would say the main thing [that sets us apart from other festivals] is musical diversity,” claims Petree. “You would be hard-pressed to find a festival with Railroad Earth and Dan Deacon on the same lineup. We focus heavily on artists that develop a strong connection with the fans. Something we saw last year as a result of that is that the fans’ experiences at our festival resonates with them long after the event is over.”
Get your tickets now (student discounts offered) at flyfreefest.com/buy-tickets. For a complete lineup and to participate in street teaming, workshops, vending, flow artistry and more, visit flyfreefest.com, facebook.com/FlyFreeFest or Twitter and Instagram @FlyFreeFest.