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Lockn' festival expands camping options to house about 40,000 attendees

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Posted: Wednesday, August 21, 2013 2:05 pm | Updated: 8:28 am, Tue Sep 3, 2013.

Neil Young and Crazy Horse have canceled their appearance at the inaugural four-day Lockn’ festival, formerly the Interlocken Music Festival, at Oak Ridge Estate in Arrington.

The festival also has expanded its camping options at the 5,000-acre estate in Arrington that is expected to draw upwards of 40,000 people into Nelson County from Sept. 5 to 8.

Neil Young and Crazy Horse was expected to perform Saturday, Sept. 7, but released a statement Monday saying doctors indicated guitarist Frank “Poncho” Sampedro’s broken hand “requires additional time to heal properly.”

Young and company also had canceled the final seven dates of their summer European tour earlier this month due to the injury. They’d been out on the road since August 2012 and were set to play a few shows up north before the band was to headline one night of the four-day festival.

The lineup still includes former Grateful Dead members Bob Weir and Phil Lesh, Zac Brown, jam-band specialists Widespread Panic and The String Cheese Incident, Georgia-bred southern rockers the Black Crowes and the recent addition of powerhouse vocalist Grace Potter and her band the Nocturnals, to name a few. It’s the newest and, likely, the largest musical gathering to hit Central Virginia.

The festival’s name also has changed.

Organizers for the Interlocken Music Festival announced Monday the event would now be known as simply Lockn’.

The festival, which will take place, is expected to draw tens of thousands to Nelson County.

Festival co-founder and publisher of Relix magazine, Peter Shapiro, said in a statement Monday a few considerations went into the decision to change the festival name.

“The logo has started to take on a life of its own, and the feedback we’ve received is that people really appreciate how the music and all elements of the festival are locked into one another,” he said. “Given the spirit of an event where we’re encouraging musicians to take chances, we wanted to make the change now.

“We also wanted to reflect the fact that Lockn’ is such a unique festival that it deserves its own unique name.”

Additionally, Lockn’ announced last week that it will be adding a forest camping option for the festival, for $249 per tent-only site.

“Forest camping is near the tent-only camping meadow, but canopied among healthy trees with a freshly prepared ground surface,” the Lockn’ website states.

Reagan Thompson, the Oak Ridge representative for the event, said everyone at the estate is excited about the event, which has been so meticulously planned that the large crowds don’t worry her.

More than 15,000 tickets have been sold so far.

“We’re not concerned,” she said. “We’ve been planning for so many months to make sure the grass is put back, so we’ll be doing a seeding protocol almost immediately after to make sure.”

For the forest camping, the organizers sought assistance from an arborist, who looked at the property and “decided exactly how to make the paths through the woods that would be best for the trees and wildlife.”

“It’s actually beautiful,” she said. “It looks incredible back there.”

Only a small plot of land is being used for forest camping this year. It is adjacent to the track, and isn’t planned to be used for any other purposes, Thompson said.

She said event organizers Shapiro and Dave Frey are environmentally friendly and respectful of the property.

“They’re leaving it the same or better condition,” Thompson said.

While the estate will be bombarded with crowds of campers for a few days, Thompson believes everything will return to normal before too long.

Other camping options include tent only (one per campsite, $20); camping with car (already sold out); and on-site tent rentals with two cots ($549).

As for admission into the festival, early-bird and “Tier 1” tickets are sold out; “Tier 2” is available for $285, which means general admission access, for one person, to all four days of the event. As of press time, organizers had no plans to offer single-day tickets.

For more specific details on camping, visit www.locknfestival.com/info#camping or for other information, contact info@locknfestival.com.

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