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Blues, BBQ, beer and Bothell on tap at festival

  • Written by Shannon Michael, Features Writer

Bothell Blues 90Courtesy Photo Attendees at last year’s Bothell Blues Festival listen to one of the five bands that performed at the Country Village event. This year’s festival, on August 31, will also feature five bands including Seattle’s The Wired! Band, winners of the 2012 International Blues Challenge on Beale Street in Memphis. The third annual Bothell Blues Festival is coming to Country Village Shops again on August 31.

"We’ve got the four Bs: blues, barbecue, beer and Bothell on tap," said event organizer Sean McVeigh.

The festival has a full slate of five award-winning music acts booked, Bothell-based beer and wines available in the beer and wine garden, Carolina Smoke BBQ on the grill and local Bothell nonprofit Help Our Woods as the designated benefit charity.

In its third year, the festival continues to grow in popularity, giving music lovers an alternative to Bumbershoot in Seattle.

The festival will run from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Country Village Shops event area near the back of the village.

Tickets for the all-day event are $17 per person and are available at Carolina Smoke, online at bothellbluesfestival.com or at the gate.

All ages are welcome.

The festival is the brainchild of David Hayward, owner of Carolina Smoke BBQ and diamond-level sponsor of the festival. A native of Charleston, South Carolina, Hayward understands the importance of blending great barbecue with soulful blues music.

He began having blues bands play in the compact restaurant fronting the entrance to Country Village for his annual anniversary celebration of being in business.

When the crowds kept growing each year, he noticed. "You could just tell we had a connection between the barbecue and the blues," Hayward explained.

He wanted to do something to give back to the community of Bothell and support local businesses at the same time, so he began the festival in 2010. That year, about 300 people attended. Last year, the numbers doubled to 600, and this year attendance is expected to double again.

This year’s festival will headline Seattle-based The Wired! Band, winners of the 2012 International Blues Challenge on Beale Street in Memphis. They’ll be joined by The Chester Dennis Jones Band, The Stacey Jones Band, Palmer Junction and Eric Freeman Blues.

In addition to the blues, Bothell-based nonprofit Help Our Woods will benefit from the proceeds of the beer and wine garden where local brewery Foggy Noggin and Open Road Wine Company will offer pours of their product.

Help Our Woods’ mission is to save North Creek Forest, located near Maywood Hills Elementary, by buying every parcel of the forest currently under private ownership to preserve the forest.

Foggy Noggin Brewery, a nanobrewery garnering national attention, will have on tap two English-styled ales: Bit O’Beaver, an English bitter, and Christmas Duck, a porter.

"We are really looking forward to this all-Bothell event," said Jim Jamison, the brewery’s manager and brewmaster.

Open Road Wine Company will offer attendees two choices. "We’ll be serving our 2011 Tempranillo and 2010 Chardonnay," owner and winemaker Sara Papanikolaou said.

Carolina Smoke BBQ will have pulled beef, pulled pork, hot links and hot wings for sale at the festival, along with a selection of sides. Attendees partial to Hayward’s BBQ ribs will be able to walk up to the restaurant to purchase them there.

Besides barbecue, Village Bean, also located in Country Village, will offer delivery service to festival attendees. They offer a variety of sandwiches and wraps, including organic, gluten and dairy free, and kids’ meals, along with espresso drinks.

In addition to gaining entry to the festival, several Country Village businesses will offer attendees discounts at their stores.

For a complete list of special discounts offered, visit the festival’s website.

Even McMenamins, a future Bothell business slated to open next year in the old Anderson school building, is involved. It is the company’s first foray into giving back to the community, said marketing director Renee Rank.

"We want to be a part of the community, and we like to participate where we’ll be," she said of the company’s small sponsorship of this year’s festival.

Country Village Shops are located at 23718 Bothell-Everett Highway in Bothell.

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