Campers were getting their sites primed on Thursday for Rockin the Rivers three-day music festival tucked away in a small valley near Three Forks.
They were there a day early to set-up camp, make friends and get ready for live music from the likes of Blue Oyster Cult, Lit, Saliva and other bands. Thursday was considered a “pre-party” to warm up for the weekend ahead.
From one side of the camping lot a man let out a loud, “rock and roll,” and long blond hair could be seen being whipped back. The scream belonged to a man named Scott Amburgey, but the hair was a wig.
Amburgey was setting up camp just a couple of yards away from the beer garden, food vendors and music stages. Teena Bock, friend of Amburgey, said that they named the camp “handi-camp’ after she broke her leg one year but still came out to the festival.
“I’ve only missed one year, in 2005,” she said.
The camp’s mascot, Bock said, is a wheel chair in honor of the year she had to be pushed around. Her favorite part of the festival is the people who attend, she said.
“Ninety percent of the time everybody gets along,” she said.
Dan Lane, another member of the “handi-camp,” agreed with Bock.
“Music brings you here the first time, and the people keep you coming back,” he said.
Lane’s sentiment was echoed throughout the camp. “Boneyard” Brian Kellen, owner of Boneyard’s bloody blend, a blend for an alcoholic drink, said the company was sponsoring the second music stage and it was his second year attending the music festival.
Kellen wore an American flag tank top, cutoff jean shorts and a cowboy hat that was equipped with a solar-powered fan that kept his head cool. The last concert he attended before this weekend was a country music festival, and, he said, the crowds for the two genres of music are different.
“It’s a different vibe when you come to a rock show — everybody’s a little more laid back,” he said.
Event goers said that live music wasn’t the only thing that happened over the weekend. Bill and Terry Putney, of Washington, said they’ve been coming back to the event for roughly 11 years.
“It’s just good all the way around,” Bill said. “There’s no fighting every time.”
There is always something going on, they said. At night, the bigger acts play, and the last couple of years, they said, a helicopter provided flights over the music festival for event-goers.
“Just don’t let it out too much,” Terry said, “It’s a secret.”
Thursday’s “pre-party” drew several hundred people, and helped kick off the festival. For more information on the event, visit their website at .