New Digs, Same Sustainability

New Digs, Same Sustainability

Homegrown Music Festival moves forward in third year


“We really learned how to throw a music festival. We learned how to incorporate sustainability aspects into the festival to make sure that we keep our waste to a minimum, that we try to create as much energy as we use, try to offset as much as we can through solar [energy], and basically try to keep our footprint as small as possible.”

That’s Homegrown Musical Festival co-founder Jeremy Gunn speaking to the first two years of Northwest Arkansas’ first sustainable music festival. In 2016 and ‘17, the festival was held at Byrd’s Adventure Center on Mulberry Mountain, not too far from where Gunn himself grew up. He and many other festivalgoers had fond memories of fishing and floating the Mulberry River well before their festival days.

Following two successful years, learning what Homegrown could be, organizers are now moving the three-day event a little farther north to accommodate most of its patrons.

“One of our main tenets we want to focus on any time we do an event is for it to be family friendly, and this [new location] will be a great place to bring them,” Gunn says of the festival’s move to Mount Kessler in Fayetteville. “It’s hard for families to get out and go camping for three or four days like they were having to do at Byrd’s. Here, they can have fun all day, load the kids up at night, give them a bath and put them to bed. I understand how important it is sometimes to get your kids in their own bed where they feel comfortable.”

With a new location come other new opportunities as well, and Homegrown organizers want to take full advantage of the amenities the park offers. Added to Homegrown this year is a full lineup of sports activities and competitions. Solo and team events in mountain biking, trail runs, disc golf, yoga sessions, hiking and more will let festivalgoers enjoy nature all over the mountain between sets of bluegrass, funk, soul, Americana and rock music.

The festival “kind of evolved from coming to Kessler and [being] really inspired by this area,” Gunn shares.

“I think that it just kind of fits hand in glove when you see the area that we’re in, where Kessler is and [how] we can kind of bring those two together. I think it was a real natural fit for us, and I don’t think we could’ve done this anywhere else in Fayetteville other than Kessler, because it just offers everything. The sky’s the limit on how much stuff we could actually do out here, and as the park grows, our festival can grow along with it.”



Homegrown Music & Mountain Sports Festival

WHEN — June 22-24

WHERE — Kessler Mountain Regional Park in Fayetteville

COST — Free; sports registration varies


FYI — Onsite overnight RV parking is $120 for the weekend. These sites are primitive. No hookups. No tent camping.



Homegrown Music

& Mountain Sports Festival


June 22

4:30 p.m. — Alaina Blake & Dylan Hawf

6 p.m. — The Mighty Pines

7:30 p.m. — Jon Stickley Trio

9:30 p.m. — Arkansauce

11 p.m. — The Chancellor Lounge Vinyl Afterparty

June 23

4 p.m. — Drifters Mile

5:30 p.m. — Handmade Moments

7 p.m. — Sports Awards

7:30 p.m. — Devon Gilfillian

9:30 p.m. — Jeff Austin Band

11 p.m. — The Chancellor Lounge Vinyl Afterparty

June 24

2 p.m. — School of Rock

3 p.m. — Sports Awards

3:30 p.m. — Mudhawk

5 p.m. — Black Pumas

7 p.m. — George Porter Jr. & Runnin’ Pardners

Categories: Music