Today we are featuring the Gathering of the Vibes, which will be celebrating its 15th year when it kicks off on Thursday.

jambands-logo-squareThe Essentials:
The Gathering of the Vibes will take place at Seaside Park in Bridgeport, CT from July 29-August 1

The Lineup:
Furthur, Rhythm Devils, Primus, Jimmy Cliff, Nas & Daman Marley, Robert Randolph & the Family Band, Jackie Green, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Umphrey’s McGee, Galactic, Little Feat, Assembly of Dust, Deep Banana Blackout, Mix Master Mike, Jamie McLean Band, Lubriphonic, Caravan of Thieves, David Gans, The McLovins, Kung Fu, Macpodz, King For A Day, Turbine, Hot Day at the Zoo, Big Sam’s Funky Nation and many others.

The Buzz:
Though the 15th annual Vibes offers some left-leaning stars like Primus and Nas, it’s truly Deadhead heaven with Furthur and the new Rhythm Devils featuring Keller Williams. Try to get there early and score a camping spot near the water at this family-friendly festival.

New for 2010
Festival promoter Ken Hays explains, “Instead of two larger stages we’re going to have one very large stage this year with 20 minutes of down time after each band. I think people get to a saturation point where they can’t absorb what they just experienced. Plus this way they’ll be able to spend some time talking to their friends before the music starts up again.”

Bonus Vibes
The festival opens its gates Thursday morning at 8 AM to those with Camping Passes. Music starts that afternoon exclusively for those holding a Weekend pass or a VIP Pass. Dark Star Orchestra, New Riders of the Purple Sage and the Donna Jean Godchaux Band are among the Thursday performers.

Don’t Miss
In addition to all the great music, Hays encourages everyone to stop by the Sustainability Village. There a number of non-profit organizations will be in attendance. He adds, “These days it seems that we’re all numb and we need to do what we can do to effect change.”

For Newbies
Hays encourages anyone who hasn’t yet attended a Vibes to stop by the message boards. There, among other things, they will find a guide, suggesting what they should bring to the festival.

Final words from Ken
“Bring sunscreen, be kind to each other and remember to smile.”