Getting Down at the Green River Festival

by Brianne Miers

This is the fifth year in a row that my dad and I will pack up my Honda with coolers and lawn chairs, and head two hours northwest of Boston to the idyllic town of Greenfield to spend two days boogying in the sunshine at the Green River Festival.

with Dad and Zach

My brother, Zach, joined us at last year’s Green River Festival.

My first trip to the Green River Festival was six summers ago, when I went with my a college friend who had settled in Greenfield after graduation (he has, unfortunately, since moved to Rochester). Later that year, I heard that one of my dad’s favorite bands, the Carolina Chocolate Drops, would be performing the following year, so I invited him to check it out with me. And the rest is our fun little history. With the exception of last year, when my brother joined us, it’s always just been the two of us.

About the Green River Festival

Named by Rolling Stone Magazine as one of Summer 2015’s Top 50 Must-See Music Festivals, the Green River Festival offers a diverse range of activities to entertain all ages – from face painting to hula hooping to browsing local crafts to sampling local brews (they finally started selling beer last year) – not to mention the opportunity to hear top bluegrass, folk, rock and funk musicians from around the globe. One of the highlights every year is when the hot air balloons – are lit up after the sun sets on Saturday night.

This year’s Green River Festival will be held July 10-12 at Greenfield Community College, and feature Steve Earl & The Dukes, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Polaris, Heather Maloney, and many, many, more. In honor of Father’s Day, and our upcoming adventure, here are some photo highlights of our annual tradition from years’ past.


Greenfield is a picturesque and peaceful town at the foot of the Berkshires.

crowd under the tent

jamming under the second stage tent to Cedric Watson & Bijou Creole

hot air balloons

One highlight of the festival is when they fire up the hot air balloons on Saturday night!

Where to Stay

There aren’t a lot of hotels to choose from right in Greenfield, so we typically stay at an AirBnB in town. If you’re looking for a little more luxury, here are two nearby hotels that I recommend: Deerfield Inn in Deerfield (only 3 miles south of Greenfield) and Hotel Northampton (20 miles south of Greenfield).

What to Do

Here are my recommendations on what see and do in the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts.

You may also like


Jill June 22, 2015 - 1:26 pm

Oh I love that you & your dad have an annual tradition like this! One thing I used to love doing with my dad when I was younger was go to antique car shows with him! My mom didn’t enjoy it do it would just be the kids and him.

peggy gilbey June 22, 2015 - 4:04 pm

What a fantastic tradition with your Dad! Happy Festival 2015 and Happy Father’s Day to Dad.


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.