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Bluegrass jamboree strums

The Tygh Valley Bluegrass Jamboree, with participants from Madras and Shaniko, will tune up at the Wasco Country Fairgrounds in Tygh Valley, Sept. 23-25.
   This 12-year music event offers a setting that is unmatched anywhere in the Northwest, according to visitors.
   From 6 p.m., Friday through 2 p.m., Sunday, the $30 weekend pass breaks down to less than $1 per entertainment and activity hour.
   The jamboree offers fun for the whole family and even free instruction if you're wanting to know more about playing the instruments that make up that toe-tapping bluegrass sound.
   If you can only come for certain sections of the event, Friday's $10 admission offers the showcase where bands compete for cash and a chance to be in the next year's lineup.
   Those in the audience by 6 p.m., when the event opens, have in their hands one vote each to cast as they intently listen and are highly entertained.
   Then the "infamous" Cafe Show takes place in the Dew Drop Inn. This year Kathy Boyd and Phoenix Rising are featured. There is limited seating so, once the seats are full and the walls are lined with people, others will have to head back to already in progress jams at the camping area.
   Saturday is the best for education and entertainment that includes the workshops at 9 a.m., a fantastic band scramble from 10 a.m. to noon, a slow jam at 2 p.m., for those who can play along and not be left behind, and two stage shows from 1-5 p.m. and 6:30-9:30 p.m. The admission for Saturday is $20, dropping to $10 at 4 p.m.
   Also on that day is the marinated beef barbecue dinner for $8.50. The meat is from Oregon Country Beef (naturally grown). The Shaniko Preservation Guild's full meal food fundaiser takes place from 5 to 6:30 p.m.
   Food is available all weekend at the Dew Drop Inn and there are other vendors of various types as well.
   The Saturday Stage Shows feature the Northwest bands, Sequoia, Fiddlegrass, and Fadin' by Nine twice because one set is not enough, especially with two award-winning fiddle players.
   There will be a special, never before seen twist to the Misty Mamas, by adding a few Papas, at the afternoon stage show.
   Keeping the event a hometown, homegrown-type northwest music retreat makes it one of the favorite festivals of the bluegrass season offerings.
   The Sunday Gospel and Bluegrass segment has been a free day since the event began in 1999 and continues in that tradition.
   The 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. time slot will begin with some open mic time and then The Campbells and Charlie Walker, of Prineville, Mud Springs Gospel Band, of Madras and Kathy Boyd and Phoenix Rising, of Portland, put the 2011 Tygh Valley Bluegrass Jamboree to rest.
   For more information call 541-489-3434. If you are camping, you only need reservations for hookups, so call Sid Moss at 541-483-2288. Otherwise there is plenty of room for tent and dry camping, and day visitors only need a chair.