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Finnegan's Wake Music Festival
in Summit, New York

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About the Festival
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The Finnegan's Wake Music Festival

The Finnegan’s Wake Music Festival is a 4 day gathering of some fine
local (and not so local) musicians playing a wide variety of eclectic music
including blues, bluegrass, folk, rock, reggae, and even flamenco guitar.
While both traditional and non-traditional Irish music plays its part in the
festival, there are a wide variety of performers and styles guaranteed to
satisfy anyone who enjoys good music and a good time. Give a listen to some of the samples from previous Festivals on this web site and you will hear what we mean. Torramh An Finnegan, Inc, (Gaelic for Finnegan’s Wake) was registered as a NYS not-for-profit corporation in May of 1997, and the first music festival was held on the banks of Summit Lake on the weekend after labor day in that same year. Since then, there have been 6 annual festivals held each year in early September, and this year we are looking forward to our seventh festival on September 4,5,6,and 7with a beautiful site, a great musical line-up , and the addition of some new faces to our popular performers of the past few years.

Our new Festival site, features a great view of the Catskills , abundant
on-site parking and camping space, and plenty of room to listen to great
music , either in our large concert tent or outside on your blanket or lawn
chair. Own new site is still only a 15 minute walk or a 2minute drive from
our original site on Summit Lake, and many of our veteran weekend campers pack their bathing suits, fishing poles, and even canoes to take advantage of the public access beach on the scenic lake. FYI, no motorboats allowed.
The lake, once the focal point of two heavily traveled Indian trials, prior
to the first settlement of Summit in 1794, is said by some historians to
have once gone by the Indian name of Utsayantha, and to have derived its
name from the story of an Indian maiden who drowned herself in its depths.
Though this story is probably apocryphal, there is no doubt that Indians
and Tories, led by Lieut. Col. John Johnson and Joseph Brant, camped on the western shore of the lake in 1794 , on their way to a large scale raid of
the settlements and farms in the Schoharie Valley henceforth known as the
Schoharie Valley Massacre. Their campsite was the site of the first
Finnegan’s Wake in Sept. of 1997.

The Festival abounds with ties to the village of Summit’s past as resting
place and stop over on one of the main stagecoach runs from Albany to the
west. A small community of about 1000 inhabitants, Summit once boasted a large number of sumptuous inns to tend to the weary traveler’s needs after the arduous journey on the new plank road built in 1855.
Only one of these establishments still remains as an operating inn. The
Lakeview House, adjacent to the first Festival site, was built in 1881 to
replace Mrs. Carrie Crow’s inn, the Crow’s Nest. Mrs. Crow advertised “Board in the Catskills: $5 per week” and drew travelers from NY City and beyond. While the days of the $5 per week hotel are long gone, the Lakeview House will be the venue for the Festival’s legendary jam sessions or “afters”. “Afters” start at the Lakeview House at the conclusion of the Festival concerts on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday and often these impromptu jam sessions last well into the morning hours.

In 1881, when the Lakeview House was new, it took over an hour and a half
to travel the 1100-foot, five-mile climb to Summit from the Richmondville
rail station at the foot of the mountain. Today a five-minute drive up Route
10 from Exit 20 of Interstate I-88, will bring the modern traveler up the
same1100 feet to the Finnegan’s Wake Festival site. He or she will pass the old Mt. Wharton farm on his left, and then the old Toll Gate House on the
right that used to bar the plank road, charging 5 cents per horse to pass.
In another mile, passing Summit Lake and through the village of Summit, the music fan will arrive at the Festival site to spend what we know will be a
memorable weekend of fine music, good fellowship with friends new and old, and a relaxing and rejuvenating experience.

TAF Music
PO Box 217
Summit, New York 12175