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Camp Euforia takes root in Lone Tree

BY ASMAA ELKEURTI | JULY 14, 2011 7:20 AM

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Music festivals are the perfect event for the ultimate outdoor live music lover. For the Iowa City area, Camp Euforia, however, forget the sweat, subtract the overwhelming crowds, and add a scenic country landscape.

Attendees can expect to enjoy a more intimate experience on the well-kept grounds of Lone Tree, Iowa when they arrive to hear the music.

“Camp Euforia has a very intimate vibe to it,” said Mike Tallman, the drummer and frontman of the band Eufórquestra. “With a lot of music festivals, it’s really easy to get lost in this massive sea of people.”

The festival is a two-day event taking place Friday and Saturday, with gates opening at noon, near Lone Tree on Jerry Hotz’s farm, 5335 Utah Ave. Two-day passes are $65. Tickets sold at the festival are $85. Camping is available.

“Camp Euforia is really a celebration of community and music,” said Eric Quiner, the festival’s director . “We have a very loyal community that comes to listen, and everyone will feel welcome at this event. The music is always good, and people usually are pretty impressed.”

Eufórquestra will be headlining along with Cornmeal, Hot Buttered Rum Stringband, Uniphonics, Dead Larry, and OSG, Quiner said.

Eufórquestra — known for its high-intensity global dance music — is a seven-piece band originally from Iowa City; it began when many of the group members attended the University of Iowa.

Camp Euforia originated eight years ago as a fan-appreciation celebration hosted by Eufórquestra for its supporters. What started out as a “hodgepodge” party on a farm with 250 attendants has grown into a full-blown music festival with 1,500 tickets for sale, ex-member Quiner said.

“Not playing a ton of festivals, we just started to create one,” he said.

Now, Camp Euforia encompasses two stages and a wide variety of activities that target every age group. The events include the featured live music, live artists, and two free yoga classes. The festival will also showcase a new activity called Silent Disco in which audience members are given headphones, providing them their only means of listening to the band, which makes for an entire crowd of people seemingly dancing to silence.

“It’s a fun, different sort of twist on traditional live music,” Quiner said.

Iowa City funk/jazz outfit the Uniphonics has been a returning act for Camp Euforia for the past four years, said Forrest Heusinkzeld, the drummer and MC for the band.

“Every year is always better than last. There’s a good community vibe they have going on there,” he said. “It’s just a really good time. There are a lot of friendly faces and good people.”

In their marketing, Camp Euforia organizers primarily target two types of groups: the broader regional jam theme and the Iowa City arts and cultural scene.

But the festival also appeals to families.

“It’s really family friendly,” Tallman said. “You always see plenty of kids and families there.”

The festival prides itself on the upkeep and attention given to detail to the area, including its professionally landscaped grounds. And, Tallman said, organizers want the festival to be a welcoming and open environment.

“Everyone should come to Camp Euphoria because it’s the most fun you’ll ever have all year,” Tallman said. “And we’re trying to get the state of Iowa to declare it as a holiday.”


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