Floyd Fest kicks off; brings in more people and new attractions

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PATRICK COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - The rhythm is alive in Patrick County.

"We say we are music magic and mountains, we're 100 artists on 8 stages over 5 days," said Chief Operating Officer Sam Calhoun.

Each year, the crowds grow bigger, but a lot of the faces stay the same.

"We're a very family friendly festival, it's very true. We have after 19 years, we watch kids grow up in this mountain," said Calhoun.

Kids like Nate Harrell. At just 2 and a half, this year marks his third Floyd Fest. Father and daughter Huck and Whitney Bowles have been coming for eight years.

"I love to camp, I just rather be camping than anything, so we come up for the music, the first couple of years I would just come for my favorite bands," said Bowles.

Once everyone makes it inside, you don't find too many people leaving. They come to enjoy the music, the crafts and spend money both at the festival and in Patrick County and Floyd.

"We look at multi million dollars coming into this area, from the people stopping at gas station, the heads on beds, and the hotel rooms leading into this coming into this festival and after this festival, so we're really proud about what we can do in this community," said Calhoun.

About 30-40 percent of Floyd Fest guests are from southwest Virginia, but everyone else comes from 43 states and 3 foreign countries.

Making friends isn't something that's hard to do here though. The goal for organizers is to just give guests a great experience.

"They deserve it, they're taking it off, this is sometimes the only vacation they get for the year, it's up to us to make it great for them," said Calhoun.