When musician Lorraine Jordan asked if anyone was from Canada, a few dozen people in the crowd at the Centre County Grange fairgrounds Friday stood up and cheered.
An extra loud hoot and holler came from Laurette and Ronald Pacquet, of Montebello, Quebec, who take their RV to numerous bluegrass fests on the East Coast.
They then waved a small Canadian flag in the air that had been holstered to their chair.
The singer of Lorraine Jordan & Carolina Road — a bluegrass band from Raleigh, N.C.— said the band will host the Central Canadian Bluegrass Music Awards on Nov. 20 and 21 in Huntsville, Ontario.
Jordan’s band, the opening act of the ninth annual Remington Ryde Bluegrass Festival, inspired people to start dancing at their seats.
The Pacquets weren’t shy about breaking it down as they improvised a two-step near their seats not far from the stage.
While fest organizer and Remington Ryde band member Ryan Frankhouser said he didn’t know how many people will attend this year’s fest, he did say it attracts an audience from across North America.
“Last year we had people from at least 18 states and most of Canadian (provinces),” he said. “You can see about the same this weekend.”
The fest was first started in Reedsville, and was moved to the Centre County Grange fairgrounds three years ago to accommodate the event’s growth, Frankhouser said.
The festival includes 20 acts, music workshops, open jam sessions, food and craft vendors, and a kids stage.
Music acts are also booked about a year in advance. Most of the festival advertisement comes from word-of-mouth, Frankhouser said.
“We’re (Remington Ryde) traveling all over and always give a plug to the fest,” he said. “Power of the (microphone) is really something.”
Next year’s festival will be held July 7-10 at the Grange fairgrounds with headliner Rhonda Vincent & The Rage.
“It’s just one of those music genres you got to love,” Frankhouser said. “Even if you’re not familiar with the music, if you hear it once, you’re nearly hooked.”