Crackin' Foxy plays at a previous Hobofest.
By Tim Baker
continued This year, the Green Circle is partnering with the Hobofest to promote Labor Day Weekend in Saranac Lake.
“Come join us for good eats and stay for Hobo beats,” Brill said. “Farm 2 Fork on Saturday, Hobofest on Sunday and you can ride the Adirondack Carousel on Monday.”
On Sunday, Sept. 2, the Hobofest returns to the Union Depot with a day full of music, starting at noon.
“We are trying to make Saranac Lake a destination for the holiday weekend as well as a staycation for those that live in the area,” said Hobofest programmer Peter Seward. “We’re lucky when we don’t step on each other’s event and even luckier when we partner with another event to maximize folks that are visiting.”
Hobofest celebrates railroad culture and the “hobo spirit.” This year’s event will take place under a 40-by-80-foot “big top” tent to assure against the variables of weather. Music will be available until 11 p.m. In the past, there have been between 400 and 500 attendees.
“With the promise of it being protected under the big top and likely getting a good day this year, I’m really expecting to build on those numbers,” Seward said.
Eat and Meet Grill & Larder will serve local fare, and there will be a children’s activities booth and festival and artist merchandise tables.
Hobofest organizers this year secured a New York State Council on the Arts grant for programming. In the past, they’ve paid musicians who have had to travel and haven’t been able to pay across the board.
“Most of the performers have played for free at the festival, and we’re really lucky to have had that kind of support from them, but we’re doing what we can to compensate,” Seward said.
This year’s special guest is Washington State legend, Baby Gramps. A former street musician and train buff, Gramps plays antique resonator National Steel guitars, and sings his own unique arrangements of rags, jazz, & blues songs from the 20s and 30s, and many originals with wordplay, humor, and throat singing.