The Krüger Brothers will return to headline the 21st annual Wayne C. Henderson Music Festival and Guitar Competition, a family-friendly event on Saturday, June 20, at Grayson Highlands State Park near Mouth of Wilson, Virginia.
Also performing will be 10-year-old sensation EmiSunshine, the April Verch Band, the Dry Hill Draggers, the South Carolina Broadcasters, and Wayne Henderson and Friends. Twenty contestants will play to have the chance to win a handmade Henderson guitar, and scholarships will be presented to young musicians studying Appalachian music and the groups that support them. The festival will present $21,000 this year, and has presented more than $137,000 in scholarships since 1995.
The outdoor festival features an impressive variety of acoustic music. The Krüger Brothers, from Wilkesboro, North Carolina, explore folk and acoustic music, and banjo player Jens Kruger has been awarded the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass Music. Ten-year-old EmiSunshine is a singer and multi-instrumentalist from East Tennessee who can interpret Appalachian songs with an impressive range. Canadian singer, fiddler and step dancer April Verch returns to the festival with her interpretation of traditional music. Old time music will be played by the Dry Hill Draggers of Franklin County, Virginia, who have been playing old-time music for more than 30 years, and the South Carolina Broadcasters, who sing in three-part harmony. Wayne Henderson, of Rubgy, Virginia, is well-known for his guitars crafted for Doc Watson, Eric Clapton and other musicians, a unique picking style and his love of sharing the music. Performances run from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Bring a chair or blanket and a picnic if you wish (no high-back chairs permitted). Meals, ice cream and a variety of concessions will be available, though are limited; picnic lunches are encouraged. A children’s area will feature free events including lariat artist Doug Smith and his rope tricks, along with music, crafts and games. Admission is $20, and children 12 and younger get in free. A portion of proceeds will benefit scholarships for young musicians. Parking costs $5. The festival is open, rain or shine. Full details at www.waynehenderson.org.