RenoFest was started in 1998 as a one day concert in Hartsville, SC. Since then, it has become a regional tradition and wonderful opportunity to welcome both the beginning of Springtime and the start of America’s bluegrass festival season. In January of 2006, RenoFest was honored by the SC Festival & Event Association with its most prestigious award, the “State Event of the Year.”
RenoFest is reminiscent of the good old “County Fair Days” of yesterday as host of the South Carolina’s only State Championship Bluegrass Band, Guitar and Banjo Contests. Additionally RenoFest offers concerts featuring Americaâ€™s best bluegrass musicians. Most events take place in the historic Center Theater in downtown Hartsville, which provides the festival with a luxurious and comfortable “rain or shine” setting.
Unlike most states, South Carolina has but a few bluegrass festivals. Thanks to the vision and dedication of two Darlington County brothers, Russ and Rob Jordan, Hartsville, SC became home to the first RenoFest Bluegrass Festival in 1998. Through the Jordans’ tireless efforts, and with assistance from Hartsville’s Judi Elvington and Marty Driggers, on behalf of the Hartsville Downtown Development Association, RenoFest has grown into one of the best bluegrass festivals anywhere.
By 2003, RenoFest was selected as the state’s “Event of the Year” by Main Street South Carolina and in January of 2006 it was selected South Carolina’s “Event of the Year” by the SC Festival & Event Association. Today, RenoFest fans from far and wide descend on Hartsville each Spring and fill every hotel to capacity in pursuit of great bluegrass music. In 2005, one couple traveled all the way from California to enjoy RenoFest!
In case you are not familiar with bluegrass music, the following is a crash course.