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WinocaFest 2011

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Anyone who has followed encore over the summer is quite aware of our bubbling anticipation thanks to Winoca Records’ debut festival, WinocaFest—which may be the best thing Wilmington has seen in a while. Err … would have been the best thing thing, if it were to happen. If anything, we just got a lot cooler wetter, windier and … umm, shakier?

Unfortunately, as of August 24th, noon, WinocaFest officially canceled their highly anticipated Saturday fun-day of music. Kevin Rhodes and Lincoln Morris, founders of Winoca Records, which is behind the festival, informed the media and public that the festival has plans to reschedule. They’re urging all ticket-holders to keep their stubs for entry into the eventual concert, which Rhodes said “may be Halloween weekend”; however, nothing has been confirmed on rescheduling the date. encore will keep readers informed and up to date on all announcements.

Until then, be safe and buckle down for the impending wild child that is Irene. Certainly, she’s no Gillian, even though she is singing “Ruination Day” for all of Wilmington to hear.


Early in the summer, Kevin Rhodes, co-founder with Lincoln Morris of local label Winoca Records, announced the lineup at Battleship Park: Gillian Welch, The Felice Brothers, Those Darlins, Onward, Soldiers (of whom Rhodes and Morris are bandmates), Mandolin Orange, The Old Ceremony and Hammer No More the Fingers. First and foremost, WinocaFest is among the fundamental shifts taking place to bring forth great music to the Port City—especially hailing the Americana genre. The all-day event will take place in the outdoor space along the banks of the Cape Fear River, a perfect backdrop to the sounds of banjos, fiddles, washboards, harmonicas and guitars.

More over, Rhodes and Morris are doing more than bringing music to the masses; they have promised an all-encompassing community affair. Carrying on the tradition from last year’s Take the Lake Festival, they have allowed nonprofit organizations to showcase their businesses to the community, and educate and raise awareness for their causes for free.

“We really want to create a celebration of all that is positive in Wilmington,” Rhodes told us in May. He has lived up to the promise, too, partnering with 1,000 People Who Care as benefactors of proceeds from the show.

“We hope it helps motivate people to get involved,” he continues. “We’re using the festival as a way to unify the community, enjoy arts and culture, and showcase great national acts in our local area.”

With the additon of beer and food vendors, he’s also keeping the festival green by utilizing Clean Energy Events and prohibiting the sale of plastics. In fact, he encourages festival-goers to bring a refillable water bottle for refills throughout the day, charged at a flat fee of $2, which goes to the Blue Green Machine (more on page 18). For the full scoop, check out the many interviews with headlining acts throughout the next four pages, as well as the community projects which benefit the festival and our community tenfold.

Tickets are still available to WinocaFest at Gravity Records (cash only) or online at for $35 ahead of time or $40 at the gate. Parking for the event won’t be a hassle, either. Though the Battleship is limited to 500 spaces, trolleys and water taxis will run from the foot of Market, downtown, all day, for a small fee. Also, the trolley service will be up and running until all festival-goers have left.

No coolers or pets are allowed, but lawn chairs and blankets are. Gates open at noon, and the music starts at 12:30 p.m. The order of the bands follows: The Old Ceremony, Mandolin Orange, Hammer No More the Fingers, Those Darlins, Onward, Soldiers, The Felice Brothers and Gillian Welch!

Oh, and what about those pesky storms brewing offshore; hence, rain or (God forbid!) a hurricane? In the words of the wise Winocans: “Get wet!”

We know The Felice Brothers will…


Forging the Fabric
Gillian Welch and David Rawlings enhance Americana soul [more]

Come Hell or High Water:
The Felice Brothers head for Winoca [more]

Spunk and Sass:
Tennessee group tips its hat to honky-tonk rock [more]

For Our Betterment:
WinocaFest is more than music [more]

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Encore Magazine regularly covers topics pertaining to news, arts, entertainment, food, and city life in Wilmington. It also maintains schedules and listings of local events like concerts, festivals, live performance art and think-tank events. Encore Magazine is an entity of H&P Media, which also powers Wilmington’s local ticketing platform, Print and online editions are updated every Wednesday.

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