For the last four years, the Treefort Music Fest has been bringing the newest and emerging indie bands, writers, and artists to Southern Idaho. While the first year of Treefort was impressive with around 130 bands playing over the course of three days, it’s nothing compared to what the Boise festival has grown into now. This year’s Treefort Music Fest just wound down from an incredible five days, with over 400 bands.
Treefort has also grown beyond just the music. Of course, music is, was, and always will be the center of the festival. Now, though, Treefort has grown to encompass independent films, local (and not local) writers and authors, and so much more. Treefort has slowly become the Western United States’ version of South by Southwest held in Austin, Texas, and it’s quickly becoming the arts and cultural event of the year in Idaho.
With so much to do, you might be easily overwhelmed by the sheer size and volume (and literally the volume) of talent that the festival contains. If you’re pressed for time next year, here are some ideas on how to enjoy the best of what the Treefort Music Fest has to offer, so you can leave with the best experience possible.
1. Don’t miss the food. It’s safe to say that the food of Treefort has become just as famous as the festival itself. You won’t want to miss the Food Truck Rally. Local food trucks from all over the Treasure Valley line the streets, creating an incredibly unique food center. And it’s probably some of the best food that you’ll ever have. From tacos, barbeque, and other delicious ethnic cuisine, you’ll find plenty to love from the local food trucks. Enjoy great food, plus you’ll still be close enough to the stages to enjoy the music.
2. Catch a show at the El Korah Shrine. This is one unique venue, and you’ll probably be hard pressed to find any other location hosted by the Shriners. But they opened their doors to the festival, and it’s been a huge hit. They’ve even opened up what’s being called Breakfastfort, serving a banquet style breakfast from midnight to four in the morning. Don’t go looking for food late at night and miss a show. Go to the El Korah Shrine! Plus, where else are you going to go to buy drink tokens from 75 year olds? For the most unique experience from Treefort, head to the El Korah Shrine.
3. Go watch a movie? You might not expect a musical festival to be showing movies, but Treefort Music Fest has grown to include even more of the arts. Now, you can watch independent films at the Treefort Film Fest. There have even been Oscar-nominated films shown. This is a great opportunity to see films made by independent filmmakers; some of them are even Idaho locals.
4. Get hacked. Okay, you won’t really get hacked, but another addition to Treefort is Hackfort. This event is tailored toward the technological crowd, and celebrates local coders, engineers, and designers. You can learn about the creative process behind technology, and see that art encompasses a broad spectrum
5. Freestyle! You don’t have to plan you time at Treefort. While it does help to make sure you hit the events, listen to the bands, watch the films, and listen to the writers that you want to, the festival is all about discovery. The organizers tend to bring in musicians and artists that might normally be under the radar. Above all, Treefort is about the experience and spectacle of art and music. So make time to just wonder around and check out whatever catches your eye. You might just find a new favorite band or other artist. Or, you can explore the exploding literary scene of Boise by checking out Storyfort.
Celebrating the Arts
Above all, Treefort is about the arts, and celebrating the diversity of music, writing, and beyond. It showcases the best of the unknown, the emerging, and the known. Idaho is an already an incredibly place to live, with its beautiful vistas and mountains. But the burgeoning art scene of Idaho is truly incredible, and Treefort is proof that Idaho is no slouch when it comes to talent. So make time for Treefort, and explore the incredible talent that Idaho has, and enjoy a different kind of beauty that our state holds.