Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Basecamp Feastival debuts for good times

Eat, dance and gather on Big Lost River

Express Staff Writer

The Basecamp Feastival is located northeast of Ketchum over Trail Creek Pass on the Big Lost River. Photo by

Many people know Basecamp as the home of Mountain Adventure Tours, a children's "enviro-tainment" program to educate kids about the world around them. Mathew Gershater, founder of Mountain Adventure Tours, spends a great deal of time at his Basecamp property with friends and visitors, who often discuss ways to use the Big Lost River land.

"It started with my friend Tibby Plasse," Gershater said. "We went out to Basecamp in February, and she said we should have a festival. I thought it was a great idea, but I didn't have time for it."

Gershater said the suggestion to have a festival kept presenting itself so he decided to go for it. Once Mountain Adventure Tours camp concluded, Gershater, Whitney McNees and others began preparing the site for "Basecamp Feastival."

"It feels like the right time to gather around good food and music and to educate ourselves on common issues as well as communicate better and raise our consciousness," Gershater said. "Having it at Basecamp is what I want to do with the property. I want it to be a beacon for environmental education and put our valley on the map for a great environment institution and retreat center."

The Feastival will have six bands, workshops on relationships, community building and children, yoga classes, fly fishing, camping, bonfires and two sit-down, family-style dinners.

"It has been a grassroots effort," Gershater said. "We don't have any seed money. It's been community donation with tables, wood, mapping out the property, Idaho's Bounty food, volunteers prepping and lots more."

Gershater said Living Architecture and Native Landscapes have been big sponsors for this first event. Volunteers are still needed to help with parking and logistics and would be compensated with a free ticket.

"I also want to encourage random acts of art at Basecamp throughout the weekend," Gershater said. "People can use the natural aspects of Basecamp to create art."

Participants who will attend dinner are asked to bring a side dish to add to the potluck menu. In addition, all participants should bring their own bowls, plates and utensils as well as warm clothes for the evening. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Green School and its next project in Sierra Leone, Sun Valley Adaptive Sports and completing permanent structures on the Basecamp property.

Signs will be posted on Trail Creek Road to guide festival-goers to the Basecamp Feastival location.

Sabina Dana Plasse:

Feastival information

· Basecamp Feastival will take place Friday, Sept. 18, through Sunday, Sept. 20. Tickets are $20 for one day and $30 for two days.

· Event is located 25 miles northeast of Ketchum over Trail Creek Road.

· Check-in will be 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 18, followed by dinner at 7 p.m. and live music and campfire from 9 p.m. to 12 a.m.

· Saturday, Sept. 19, 10 a.m. group yoga, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. live music and workshops, 6 p.m. keynote speaker and dinner and 7:30 p.m. to 12 a.m. live music.

· Sunday, Sept. 20, 10 a.m. group yoga and 11 a.m. leave-no-trace cleanup.

· Live music by Sheryll Mae Grace, FourStroke Bus, Piers Lamb, Captain Dano and the Nobodies, Aaron and Jason of Ryebender and Ethan Tucker.

· Speakers will be John Furey, Alison Poulsen, Dale and Peggy Bates, Wade Port and more.

· Workshops will include fly fishing, massage and group yoga by Cathie Caccia.

· For details, tickets, yurt reservations, directions visit

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