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Gem and Jam Festival Goes Above and Beyond

Gem and Jam Festival Goes Above and Beyond

TiffanyRainey

February 9th, 2020

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On January 31st, gem fanatics, families, artists, and people of all walks of life made their way to Pima County fairgrounds. Gem and Jam Festival’s year-long awaited return was underway. There was a fresh new layout for the grounds and an unforgettable music line-up. We certainly got treated to the largest display of live artists to date.

Art Installations, food, and relaxation

Entering the festival from the super close campgrounds was quick and easy. The colorful path into the festival grounds led to a variety of food vendors. Each food truck greeted you with a friendly face and felt like a party of their own. Food options for diets of all kinds stretched along the Onyx and Amethyst stages.

Further, there was an array of art installations, such as Gregory Coye Art’s enthralling “Moment Before Awakening”. This particular piece was a four-walled structure that displayed a meditating alien sprouting actual crystals from the tip of its head. Surrounding this creature was wood cut-outs and bright changing lights. To one side was a shelter of crocheted rainbow umbrellas lighting up all night. It was easy to find hammocks and paracord nets by the artist Tree-Net Willy. These were a creative place to relax with friends, climb into or make new friends while relaxing between sets.

Exploring the festival grounds at Gem and Jam

Friday opened up with several workshops, including the Drumming Sounds opening ceremony. They did drum building classes among many other events and stayed active all weekend at the corner of the main drag. Further towards the Pavilion, one might find themselves in the market place full of this year’s colorful vendors. Third Eye Pinecones, Denver Gem Collection, and The Headspace are just a few festival circuit favorites to choose from.

Artist booths such as Chris Dyer’s Positive Creations, Johnathon Singer Art and Bear Fruit designs had impressive visionary art and clothing. The dynamic duo of Ellie Paisley and Aaron brooks set up near mainstage at the tail end of this year’s gallery. There was no shortage of beautiful art prints, kimonos, pins and more.

A Plethora of Visionary Art

Further west into fairgrounds, Tribe 13 filled the Pavilion with their most impressive gallery set up to date. Roughly 60 amazing artists from all over the country were creating art directly in front of the main stage. Artists of all kinds created paintings to be set for auction to benefit a local charity. Laura Mcgowan, Olivia Jane, and Dice 51 were some festival favorites that could be found all weekend delving into their creations.

Artists like Chris Bohl, Stephen Kruse, and Meghan Walker posted up larger paintings alongside the pavilion. Festival-goers had the opportunity to watch a collaborative mural by Ill Des, Ally Grimm and Jake Amason unfold. In addition, Whitney Haulborn was there to create a colorful large-scale wall mural. Gem and Jam Festival always delivers a mixed music, art and gem festival. This year’s variety and quality were definitely top-notch. 

Gem and Jam’s High-Vibe music line up

Adding to the jaw-dropping art line-up, the music in store for the weekend certainly set the energy right. Friday night started with a high energy electronic set from Cofresci. Followed by electronic and bluegrass fused Dirtwire. Which brought dreamy positivity and fun vibes. As well, we had Daily bread, Manic Focus and Marvel Years get us ready for a much-anticipated set from Dave Tipper

Saturday did not disappoint as a follow up on such an amazing first day, opening with more of bluegrass and funkadelic feel. Eminence Ensemble opened up the mainstage with a funk and jam twist. Additionally, a groovy variety of acts like Late Night Radio, The Floozies and Buku set the stage for Big Gigantic to headline the festival.

A New Yearly Tradition

This is definitely a festival you can enjoy year after year. After all, the Gem and Jam Festival has more than just great music. The option to shuttle into the country’s biggest gem show of the year is truly special. Coupled with gem, clothing and jewelry vendors and many visionary artists, this is truly one of the most unique and intimate festival experiences all year!

You can stay up to date about Gem and Jam Festival and attending in 2021 on:

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Photos by: Patrik Essy

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