Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Association


Thursday through Sunday,
August 10-13, 2017
El Rancho Mañana, Richmond, MN

Nominated IBMA Event of the Year FIVE Times!







Welcome to the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival at El Rancho Mañana. This event is produced by the non-profit Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association (MBOTMA), and has been nominated FIVE times as Event of the Year (2005, 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2014) by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) in Nashville. Have you seen this YouTube Video from 2013?

The Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Festival is held every year the Thursday-Sunday surrounding the second Saturday of August. In 2017 that will be August 10-13. This festival features several top national touring bands as well as the best bands from the Upper Midwest region, suiting a wide range of interests from bluegrass to old-time string band to related acoustic music. You'll enjoy hearing something familiar, and discovering something new!

This festival is really an entire week of musical fun at El Rancho Manana near Richmond MN. Several days of pre-festival instructional camps will be followed by four days of bluegrass and old-time bliss. You can plan on: 

  • More than 30 hours of Mainstage concerts
  • Daytime instrument collaborations and nightly dances in the Showcase Tent
  • Contests, crafts, and games in the Family Area
  • 20 hands-on workshops in the Workshop Area
  • New groups at the Underground
  • Dozens of food and merchant booths in the Marketplace
  • AND the late night fun at Ranch House Live!

In addition to the professional bands, many of the 4,000 plus people that attend are musicians themselves. They will bring their instruments and join in the many impromptu jam sessions that go on day and night in the campgrounds. 

If you're interested in getting involved as a musician yourself, you may want to consider registering for either the bluegrass or old-time stringband instructional camps that are held in the days prior to the festival. Think about it for 2017 - we'll announce who will be teaching early in the year.

More than 400 people help with this festival every year, and that's what makes it all possible. Can you help us by volunteering? Consider making a donation of your time.

Are you looking for directions and a map to get you there? Or a local motel? Information about the grounds and facilities? Try the festival location page.

Or are you looking for maps of the festival grounds that you can view or download? The list of frequently asked questions will most likely give you the answer to many other questions.

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These activities are made possible in part by a grant provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board, through an appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature from the Minnesota arts and cultural heritage fund with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008, and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.