Leyla McCalla headlines Forest Fest on Saturday. | Courtesy of Leyla McCalla

It doesn’t get more Southern than hosting a free bluegrass concert smack dab in the middle of a 6,600-acre forest. Throw in some food, wine and beer, and we’ve got ourselves a party. Jefferson Memorial Forest‘s 13th annual Forest Fest takes place Saturday and features six bluegrass musicians/bands.

The event runs all day long, from 11 a.m.-7 p.m., and will include food trucks, craft vendors, children’s activities (even a climbing wall!), workshops and, of course, the sweet sounds of Leyla McCalla, Flatt Lonesome, Mipso, the Misty Mountain String Band and many more (the full schedule is below).

McCalla, formerly of the Caroline Chocolate Drops, headlines Forest Fest and brings her Haitian-American background to the cello, banjo and guitar. Her 2013 debut album, “Vari-Colored Songs: A Tribute to Langston Hughes,” landed on many best-of lists that year, including the London Sunday Times.

Jefferson Memorial Forest is located 15 miles south of downtown and has 10 miles of scenic trails for campers and hikers to explore. Field camping is suggested for Forest Fest, and there’s a $10 parking fee per car.

Forest Fest 2017

  • 11:30 a.m. — Jon Stickley Trio
  • 12:45 p.m. — The Wooks
  • 2 p.m. — Misty Mountain String Band
  • 3:30 p.m. — Mipso
  • 4:45 p.m. — Flatt Lonesome
  • 6 p.m. — Leyla McCalla (formerly of the Carolina Chocolate Drops)
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Sara Havens
Sara Havens is the Culture Editor at Insider Louisville, known around town as the Bar Belle (barbelleblog.com). She's a former editor of LEO Weekly and has written for Playboy and The Alcohol Professor. Havens is the author of two books: "The Bar Belle" and "The Bar Belle Vol. 2."