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Top 5 Things to Do at Four Corners Folk Festival

a woman holding her child at Four Corners Folk Festival

Each September, the iconic town of Pagosa Springs hosts the popular Four Corners Folk Festival. Attendees flock from all over the country, yet it retains its original charm and family-friendly nature. The venue is superb: atop a towering hill overlooking the town of Pagosa Springs and the San Juan Mountains. There’s plenty to do: performances, workshops, food vendors, and more! With so many Pagosa Springs activities to experience, it can be hard to decide where to spend your time. We’re here to help! Here is our list of the top 5 Four Corners Folk Festival things to do! Enjoy!

1. Camping

For best access to all that this Pagosa Springs music festival has to offer, pitch your tent or park your vehicle right on Reservoir Hill. From there, you can simply saunter to the food and other vendors or take a quick break from all the action in the comfort of your own space. 

Prices are per person rather than per site. Feel free to kick back around a fire, but only with propane stoves (as you’re surrounded by a beautiful, yet old, ponderosa forest). Sites are first-come first-served. If you want a site right next to your buddies, be sure to get there right on time. 

Besides being able to have front row access to all the performers and vendors, you might be able to catch local musicians in a jam session late at night. Sometimes, the internationally-renowned performers choose to join them. 

2. Workshops

The Four Corners Folk Festival has a history of putting on excellent workshops dating back to its very first year. The workshop tent is the place to be whether you’re a seasoned musician looking for insight from professional performers or just a dabbler. 

You’ll be able to really get to know the performers as they instruct and guide during these workshops. You’ll be surrounded by a lush lupine meadow as well as towering pinon pines, all overlooking Pagosa Springs and the San Juan Mountains. It’s just a quick jaunt from the campground to attend. 

If you’re attending a workshop, it’s best if you bring your own instrument to play along. However, anyone is welcome to sit in and enjoy the tunes. 

3. Kids programs

Don’t hesitate to bring along the kiddos to the music festival. Kids under 12 can attend free and there’s plenty for them to do! Head to the Ponderosa stage for engaging acts and free prizes. The kids will be excited to watch Andy the Juggler do his tricks or Ruby Balloon twist balloons into animals of their choice. There’s also an upcycled arts and crafts event and free t-shirts.

4. Late night stage

The party doesn’t stop when the shows end! Head to the Ponderosa Stage for up to four more sets from your favorite musicians. While easiest to attend if you’re camping on site, day pass holders are just as welcome. Be prepared for a jaunt down back to your car when you choose to leave as the shuttles stop running just after the main stage shuts down. If you choose to stay and get down, bring an extra layer. It’s fall in the Rockies after all, and temps can plunge into the 40s after dark.  

5. Food/Vendors

An abundance of local food and drink vendors surround the main stage and campground. You’ll find something for everyone, from burgers to crepes to local beer. With your ticket, you’ll be able to purchase beer tokens and partake in the year’s sponsors, which are yet to be announced.

2023 Dates & Tickets

People at Pagosa Springs Music festival stand in front of the stage at night

The 2023 Four Corners Folk Festival will take place on September 1 – 3rd on Reservoir Hill park in downtown Pagosa Springs.  Tickets and camping passes for Pagosa’s premier music festival will go on sale in February at The Four Corner Folks Festival’s official site. Camping passes almost always sell out so reserve your tickets early.  The lineup will be announced sometime after the 1st of the year but previous headliners have included Yonder Mountain String Band, Los Lobos, Bela Fleck, Nickel Creek, Del McCoury, Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Earl Scruggs, Ricky Scaggs, John Hiatt, and the Infamous Stringdusters.

Local Insider Tip

three people float on tubes in pagosa springs

Hike up to the Observation Deck for a spectacular view of the Continental Divide and the South San Juan mountains. From the Festival Meadow, follow the service road east for ⅓ of a mile to the high point.

While you’re in town, be sure to get out on Pagosa’s iconic San Juan River! Since the Four Corners Folk Festival takes place in the fall, the rafting season will have wrapped up but there’s still adventures on the river to be had. Head to Pagosa Outside, just down the hill, to rent river tubes. As your float down the river, you’ll go right through downtown Pagosa Springs, passing by both free and commercial hot springs en route. You’ll get plenty of splashing as you float through the town’s many man made surf waves. Depending on water levels, Pagosa Outside offers all-inclusive shuttled tubing trips as well as Pagosa tube rentals.  We also have Pagosa Springs paddleboard rentals and Pagosa Springs kayak rentals.

We hope you enjoy the Folk Festival in Pagosa Springs and while you’re in town, don’t forget to checkout some of the other things to do that makes Pagosa so fun.