On the MyBarnstock website providing details about the annual benefit concert to be held the last weekend in July, a few words beneath the logo say it all: "music, community service, good times."
This week, as Miles Brown, BarnStock's founder and executive producer, and his brother Daniel, the event's director of operations, gathered with a few musicians on stage at the four-acre venue off Black FarmsRoad just outside Huntersville, those terms were repeated often as the organizers and some of those slated to perform emphasized the enduring roots of a high school hoedown that in only four years has emerged as a can't-miss rite of summer for teenagers and adults from the Lake Norman area and beyond.
This year's event — the biggest yet — expands to two days, features 23 bands, 24 hours of music, food and beverages, the option of overnight camping, a benefit volleyball tournament and a Friday night headline performance by the nationally acclaimed, rock-roots band Donna the Buffalo (see this page for details). Organizers expect attendance to soar — perhaps tripling previous turnout and surpassing 1,000 each day during the noon to midnight schedule — and a new charitable foundation is in place to funnel every penny raised to five area institutions and a local college student facing a medical hardship.
Not a bad mid-summer achievement for a couple of civic-minded 20-somethings and their mostly college-aged collection of friends, supporters and performers.