This month, Scotty Stoughton is Avon’s MVP (musically viable player)
AVON — While most people involved in the 2015 FIS Alpine World Ski Championships are either trying to sleep it off or feeling a little deflated over the end of the madness, Scotty Stoughton is neither. Hot on the heels of Apres Avon, a 12-day street party for the Championships, Stoughton and his company, Bonfire Entertainment, are smack in the middle of another Avon event: WinterWonderGrass Festival. The two-day festival wraps up Sunday, though a second WinterFest in Tahoe goes down next month.
“It really exceeded any expectations and thoughts I had,” said Stoughton about Apres Avon. “Everything, from the reception of the music to the way the artists performed to how the staff executed everything and the energy around town — it was super clean and well received.”
Though creating a family-friendly street party that was meant to support a bigger, larger event is different than building a stand-alone festival with three stages and late-night parties, in Stoughton’s universe it all dovetails nicely.
“It’s all part of the same trajectory,” Stoughton said. “When I was touring with the band, we were always searching for an identity. I’m older now, and I’ve come into my comfort zone. What I value personally is leaving no trace, being authentic and being there personally at each event, shaking people’s hands at the front gate. I can stay true to what I believe.”
The zero-waste concept is key for Stoughton, who doesn’t just turn his attention to the bottles and cans that pervade his events, but the entire infrastructure required to pull it off. This year’s WinterWonderGrass stage includes customized vintage lights, reclaimed barn wood and a giant, Amish wagon wheel.
“The whole thing is an art piece,” he said enthusiastically.
The communal nature of building something out of existing pieces and parts extends to the festival’s music. In the tradition of bluegrass festivals elsewhere, there’s a lot of musician swapping and sitting in.
Stoughton even promises some special guests, though no word on who. “There’s something about this event that’s intangible,” he said. “There’s this energy, this vibe. I can’t describe it, market it or sell it. You just have to see it.”
See it, and the man behind it, this weekend at Avon’s Nottingham Park. Visit http://www.winterwondergrass.com for more information.