Bluegrass Fever performs on stage at the 38th annual Coombs Bluegrass Festival. The festival is back this year for its 40th edition, running Aug. 3-5. — NEWS File Photo

Bluegrass festival back in Coombs for 40th year

Three-day event to include concerts and workshops

With decades of history behind it, the Coombs Bluegrass Festival is back for its 40th year with a three-day event running Aug. 3-5.

The event, taking place at the Coombs Rodeo Grounds (2601 Alberni Hwy.), is set to feature local groups such as the Coombs Old Time Fiddlers, as well as the Cloverpoint Drifters from Victoria, the Lonesome Town Painters from Vancouver and 5 on a String from Port Coquitlam along with several others.

The festival also includes a series of workshops, including classes on three-part harmony, song selection and gospel music.

The festival kicks off at 4:45 p.m. with opening announcements on Friday, Aug. 3, followed by the Coombs Old Time Fiddlers, Scout Mountain and several others.

The festival picks up again at noon on Saturday, running into the evening, and then 11 a.m. on Sunday and throughout the day.

Tickets are at the gate, cash only, with camping available at $15 per night.

Full weekend passes are $85 with daily passes available for less.

For more info on tickets, workshops and more, go to

The festival began in 1978 as a sort of revival of the Coombs Country Opera by the Coombs Community Organization (CCO), according to Jim Brown in a history article on the festival’s website (

As the opera (an event where musicians could come and perform in front of an audience) grew popular, the CCO and performers came up with the idea of holding a bluegrass festival.

The festival has seen performers from across Canada, and some from as far away at Texas, writes Brown.

— NEWS Staff

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