Solid Sound Filling Up 'Pop-Up' Campgrounds
|Campers set up their gear on Solid Ground at the Noel Field Athletic Complex.|
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — If you partition it, they will come.
The three main camp sites for Solid Sound Festivalgoers are just about filled up. Solid Ground, Hoosac Valley Campground, and Camp Aggie resemble giant grids ready to host a portion of the over 7,000 concert goers to visit the Berkshires this year for the event.
Throughout the day Friday, concertgoers have been filtering through Cheshire, Adams, and North Adams with tents, coolers, grills sleeping bags, and the occasional guitar for pre-concert serenading.
Solid Ground, located at Noel Field Athletic Complex is at capacity with 375 plots accommodating four people each having all been reserved. This is also the case for the Hoosac Valley Campground, which has room for 245 campsites.
The newcomer this year is Camp Aggie located on Bowe Field in Adams.
Camp organizer Chuck Felix said Camp Aggie was the designated overflow camp and it was only expected to hold 10 to 15 campers, however, this is quickly changing.
"We didn't except much but we are up to over 40 now and we expect more to come throughout the weekend," Felix said. "It's good for us, and it makes a lot of money.
Adams Town Administrator Tony Mazzucco said although there is no official plan to bring people from the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art campus to Adams, he is hopeful some will make the trek south — especially with camps now in both Cheshire and Adams.
"Anytime an event like Solid Sound occurs you always see an increase in foot traffic, and even though the event is in North Adams, we will see increased foot traffic this weekend," Mazzucco said. "Although it [Camp Aggie] won't be that large, it's still individuals choosing to stay in Adams for the weekend who will undoubtedly do some shopping, eating, and drinking here and take some time to see the Town."
Mazzucco said the creation of Camp Aggie shows the need for more outdoor recreational lodging in the area, which is something he hopes to accomplish with the Greylock Glen.
Mazzucco said next Solid Sound he would like to have a more formal effort to tap into the foot traffic North Adams will see.
"We may be two separate towns, but we really need to look at the whole of the northern Berkshires as one community," he said. "What's good for part is good for the whole."
However, the Camp Aggie workers are doing their own advertisement.
With a fist full of maps pointing out places to eat and visit in Adams, Felix is doing his part.
"I'm handing out these maps and telling people about some of the great places to eat in Adams," Felix said. "North Adams gets most of the action, and I think it is important to redistribute it a little."
Solid Sound opens at Mass MoCA on Friday night and runs through Sunday.