There are plenty of reasons to buy your tickets in advance for the inaugural Gnarnia Festival. To begin with, the first two tiers of early bird tickets have already sold out. The good news is, you can still get into the three-day event (Thursday-Saturday, Aug. 9-11) for $135 (Royal Treatment VIP passes are $450, RV passes are $250 and single-day passes are $75).
Held in Beech Mountain, Gnarnia (with its The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe theme) features a star-studded lineup including Beats Antique, 7 Walkers, Paper Diamond, Tipper, Emancipator, Mark Farina, Conspirator, 12th Planet and Toubab Krewe, among many others. Performance artists add "everything from fire spinning to stilt walking to comedy here in The Land of Gnarnia" and a roster of visionary/spiritual/psychedelic visual artists (Android Jones, Brandon Paul, Abho Thati, Sean Pace and others) amp up the creative element.
And, if you need more than just music, dancing and art at your festival, Gnarnia's events list offers an obstacle course of activities. Bicycle jousting, mud wrestling and a costume ball are on the itinerary, along with guided yoga and nature hikes.
Speaking of nature, Gnarnia's list of lodging possibilities suggests a refreshing mountain getaway (two bedroom chalet, anyone?), and a nearby campground offers rustic tent sites to the budget-minded starting at $16 a day. Find all the information at http://gnarniathefestival.com.— A.M.