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Fork Fest the first ever FLOATING CONCERT on the South Fork River

Updated: Aug 14, 2023

Imagine floating on a river as music fills the air and the sun sets on the horizon. Sounds like a dream, right? This dream is about to become a reality for the little town of Cramerton, located along the banks of the South Fork River. Welcome to Fork Fest, the first-ever floating concert and mini-music festival, set to take place in the heart of downtown Cramerton.

The Birth of Fork Fest

Before we dive into the details of Fork Fest, let's first get to know the creators of this event and the catalyst for it. The Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation is a group dedicated to protecting, preserving, and restoring the South Fork River, the largest tributary of the Catawba River. John Searby, the Executive Director of the Catawba Riverkeeper, is the visionary for this event and dreamed of creating a floating concert experience. And thus, Fork Fest was born.

Unlike traditional floating concerts, where bands perform on a stationary dock, Fork Fest takes it further. Bands will perform on floating rafts, meandering along the South Fork River, with the audience paddling alongside them. It's an adventurous and immersive experience, bringing music and nature together like never before.

Fork Fest

AUG 4 & 5, 2023

The Heart of the Fest: Confluence

Fork Fest is taking place in Cramerton, with the hub of the festivities coming from Confluence, a unique community center where arts, music, and recreation come together alongside the river. The name "Confluence" is inspired by the point where two rivers meet, symbolizing the coming together of the community for art, music, and recreation.

Confluence is a hub for various activities, including art workshops, live music concerts, kayak and bike rentals, and much more. What's unique is that all the proceeds from Confluence go directly towards funding the South Fork River Health Project, a collective endeavor to rejuvenate the river that has faced challenges over the years.

The Floating Concert

So, what exactly will this unique floating concert look like? The rafts for the band are the brainchild of Greg Nance, Confluence's Engagement Manager, and a kayaking expert. These rafts are a clever assembly of inflatable materials, providing a stable platform for the musicians to play while expert paddlers guide them downstream.

The excitement will kick off on Friday with the Floating Concert starting at the Boathouse in McAdenville. The audience will paddle along the river while listening to the floating music procession by Hiram. As the sun sets on the enchanting river, the magic will continue in downtown Cramerton with more music on solid ground at Confluence.

A Weekend-Long Celebration

Fork Fest isn't just a one-day affair; on Saturday, the celebration of music, art, and community continues inside Confluence, with a kids' concert featuring Trace Casanova, followed by performances from talented local artists like Will Easter and Alonzo Wesley. Kids will have a blast with interactive activities like making their musical maracas and learning to play the kazoo.

Fostering Awareness and Appreciation

Fork Fest isn't just about music and entertainment; it's a means to engage and educate the community about the South Fork River and its significance. By getting people out on the water and allowing them to experience the river's beauty firsthand, the organizers hope to instill a deeper appreciation for the water resources we rely on. Additionally, the festival provides an opportunity to raise awareness about the unique challenges faced by the South Fork River and the vital work undertaken by the Catawba River Keeper Foundation.

A Harmonious Community Gathering

The organizers believe that music has the power to bring people together, and Fork Fest is the perfect manifestation of this philosophy. By celebrating the natural beauty of the river and fostering community spirit through art and music, the event aims to create cherished memories that will last a lifetime.

If you love music, nature, and community camaraderie, plan to visit Cramerton for Fork Fest. It promises to be an unforgettable experience, where you can paddle alongside the melodies, celebrates the South Fork River, and contribute to a cause close to many's hearts. Be a part of this unique floating concert and music festival, and let the magic of the South Fork River envelop you in its charm.


Make your plans and get your tickets now for an unforgettable experience that celebrates the beauty of the South Fork River while supporting its health and preservation. The South Fork River Fork Fest is just around the corner, and you won't want to miss this incredible 2-day music festival in Cramerton, NC, on August 4th and 5th, 2023.