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Cozy festival like big backyard party

  • Redorder/David Rainville<br/>The crowd at the Old 78 Farm Fall Festival gets down to the sound of Girls Guns and Glory Saturday in Warwick.

    Redorder/David Rainville
    The crowd at the Old 78 Farm Fall Festival gets down to the sound of Girls Guns and Glory Saturday in Warwick.

  • Recorder/David Rainville<br/>Sara Jenney and daughter Nolah Poulin, of Greenfield, have fun at the Old 78 Farm Fall Festival with friends Oliver and Krysal Kenny and their infant son, and Ben and April Potter and their son Lyric. Saturday was the music festival's fourth year at Philip and Angella Simon's Warwick home.

    Recorder/David Rainville
    Sara Jenney and daughter Nolah Poulin, of Greenfield, have fun at the Old 78 Farm Fall Festival with friends Oliver and Krysal Kenny and their infant son, and Ben and April Potter and their son Lyric. Saturday was the music festival's fourth year at Philip and Angella Simon's Warwick home.

  • Redorder/David Rainville<br/>The crowd at the Old 78 Farm Fall Festival gets down to the sound of Girls Guns and Glory Saturday in Warwick.
  • Recorder/David Rainville<br/>Sara Jenney and daughter Nolah Poulin, of Greenfield, have fun at the Old 78 Farm Fall Festival with friends Oliver and Krysal Kenny and their infant son, and Ben and April Potter and their son Lyric. Saturday was the music festival's fourth year at Philip and Angella Simon's Warwick home.

WARWICK — There was a ton of family fun tucked away in the woods of Warwick at the Old 78 Farm Fall Festival Saturday.

“We weren’t sure what to expect, but this is perfect,” said Oliver Kenny of Leverett. He and wife Krystal Kenny brought their infant son and a few friends to their first Old 78 Farm Fall Festival. “It’s really cozy.”

The slope of Philip and Angella Simon’s backyard created a natural amphitheater, with the music from the main stage reverberating from the hill behind the crowd.

Though Philip Simon has been booking gigs for bands for more than 20 years, his festival is relatively new. The first one was held in 2009, and though it’s grown, it’s still got the feel of a big backyard party.

“It’s exactly what we’d hoped for,” said April Potter of Halifax, Vt.

Potter, her husband Ben, and their son Lyric came along with Sara Jenney and daughter Nolah Poulin, of Greenfield, and the Kennys, to see members of their favorite band, reggae group The Alchemystics.

Though the lineup was tweaked and the band performed as The Alchemisfits Saturday, the kids didn’t mind.

“Lyric is obsessed with the Alchemystics; he loves them,” said April Potter.

Though the group of friends and their kids have been to plenty of music festivals, large and small, they liked the down-home, comfortable feel of the Old 78.

“It’s nice and small, we don’t have to worry about the kids running off,” said Jenney. “There are lots of other kids here, too.”

The young ones at the festival got in for free and enjoyed face painting, entertainment from Madamoiselle Pixie Bell the Clown, balloon art and a bubble machine.

The festival wasn’t just a family affair for the attendees. The Simons put the festival on together and Philip Simon’s brother served up smoky barbecue with his prize-winning cookoff team “I’m a Hog for Q Baby.” Angella Simon’s mother also offered pickled and canned foods, as well as fresh homemade pies.

The family also had a lot of help from volunteers.

“One guy spent three days helping us out,” said Philip Simon. “He must have worked 20 hours.”

Simon said Saturday’s concert was a little more well-attended than previous years and credited it to recent publicity.

The festival should continue to grow. The Simons have been developing the festival area for the last four years and improve it a little every year.

David Rainville can be reached at:
drainville@recorder.com
or 413-772-0261, ext. 279

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