West coast aficionados of fine mandolins have something to look forward to early next year. Loar Fest West will be held as a part of the SuperGrass festival in Bakersfield, CA the first weekend of February, 2006. The concept of a Loar Fest – a meeting of owners of the highly prized Gibson F-style mandolins made in the early 1920s, and signed by Gibson innovator Lloyd Loar – developed over successive years at the annual IBMA conventions where several owners of these mandolins might be in one place at the same time.
Loar Fest West is described by its organizers thusly:
This event is a gathering and celebration of Lloyd Loar mandolins and includes displays of Loar mandolins by their owners, a panel discussion featuring Loar historians and experts, and a star-studded lineup of musicians playing Loar instruments.
The event will be held on Thursday February 2 at the Holiday Inn Select, adjacent to the Civic Center Auditorium where the remainder of the festival shows will take place. The day starts with a luncheon at noon, followed by a chance to view several Loars on display. The remainder of the afternoon will be given over to panel discussions and performances.
A ticket for the SuperGrass festival gets you in to the mandolin events as well. More details and a complete schedule can be found on the Loar Fest West web site.