At Kate Wolf Music Festival, camping's half the fun

  • Campers at one of the campgrounds at the Kate Wolf Music Festival just north of Laytonville at Black Oak Ranch. Aside from a large musical lineup, one of the draws of the event is the camping. (PHOTO: CRAIG SHAW)

By now, you probably know if you're going camping at Kate Wolf Festival next weekend. And you probably know all about the headliners Joan Baez, Los Lobos, Jackie Greene and the Indigo Girls. And the yoga and tai chai sessions in the meadow. And maybe even the wooden, sunlit showers that everyone stands in line for.

But if it's your first time pitching a tent on the Hog Farm, you might have a few questions.

Consider the options:

— There's the Riverside Camp, where no vehicles are allowed.

— The Meadowlands is the largest camp site, allowing RVs, trucks and car-camping with tents.

— Quiet Camp is at the south end of Meadlowlands, reserved for those who would rather not stay up for the all-night revelry.

— And Family Camp is for those with kids, located near the Bath House, Food Court and Kids Area.

— Not to mention the backstage Bear Camp, the clothing-optional beaches and the Hobo Jungle fire-pit jam sessions that go late into the night.

Put them all together and it's one big, happy, musical family — in the spirit of Woodstock, but without the howling rains, bad acid and total muddy mess afterward.

"My favorite stories over the years are about folks that have met at the festival, many times by camping near each other, fallen in love, gotten married and now have kids that they are bringing to the festival," says promoter Cloud Moss, who has produced the festival since it started in 1996 at Caswell Vineyards in Sebastopol.

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