Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival Focuses on the Environment

The 15th annual spring Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival of Music & Dance is set for May 4 through May 7. The festival has a history of being committed to practicing and promoting environmental sustainability. Below are three of the many things festival-goers can learn and experience about sustainability at the festival.
Recycling and Composting
Last spring, the festival recycled over 12,000 pounds of plastic, glass and aluminum and composted over 4,000 pounds of food waste. All of the utensils, plates, and bowls from the food vendors at the festival can be composted.
Throughout the festival grounds, attendees will find stations where they can separate their trash, recycling, and compost. they are also encouraged to separate trash and recycling at their campsites in order to save festival volunteers the work in the weeks to follow. Free tickets to the next festival are even rewarded to a lucky winner who drops off his or her sorted trash/recycling during certain times.
According to the U.S. Composting Council, “compost is the product resulting from the controlled biological decomposition of organic material.” Compost can degrade some pollutants, suppress some plant pathogens and improve the soil’s water holding capacity. Additionally, compost reduces the amount of waste that goes to landfills. Festival composting not only prevents waste, but it encourages festival-goers to adopt more green ways of living.


Food Preservation
“Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year-approximately 1.3 billion tons-gets lost or wasted,” as said by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
At the Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival, Pierre Lauffer, environmental health specialist and Sustainability Pavilion Coordinator, will lead a discussion about the importance of preserving food.
There will be other forums at the festival’s Sustainability Pavilion throughout the festival as part of the commitment by the festival to educate people about sustainable practices they can use in their lives.
Solar Power
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, North Carolina ranks second, behind California, in solar power. The SEIA said North Carolina has a solar power capacity of 3,016 megawatts-that is enough to power 341,000 homes.
Ed Witkin, of Carrboro Solar Works, will lead a discussion about the use of solar power in homes. Witkin’s forum will also be held in the Sustainability Pavilion. More information about events held at the pavilion can be found at:


The festival has also made an effort to eliminate plastic water bottles. There is fresh well water on tap at many locations. Cups and glass jars are available for purchase and attendees are encouraged to bring their own water containers


Festival tickets are on sale now and available by phone at 919-542-8142 and at


4-day passes – $114 in advance (through May 3rd) / $124 at gate
Youth (13-15) 4-day passes – $59 advance / $64 at gate
Kids 12 and under are FREE!
1-day passes – $32 (Thurs), $42 (Fri), $42 (Sat), and $32 (Sun) – all with $5 off if purchased in advance
Youth (13-15) 1-day – $16 (Thu), $21 (Fri), $21 (Sat), and $16 (Sun) – only at gate
Tent camping – $15 advance / $20 at gate
Vehicle camping – $86 advance / $94 at gate
RV camping – $125 advance / $135 at gate