Memorial Music Fest: Purple Hatters Ball
Pack your tents, fill your coolers, grab your wackiest festival attire and favorite purple hat and make way to the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park for the eighth annual Purple Hatters Ball.
Unlike other festivals held at SOSMP, the Purple Hatters Ball lays a much more meaningful foundation for festival-goers who arrive at these indigenous grounds for more than just the music.
PHB trims the masses of this legendary park, making it an intimate gathering of the Suwannee tribes in order to share this special event in loving memory of Rachel Morningstar Hoffman. A Florida State University graduate, Hoffman was arrested for possession of marijuana and required to perform as a police informant in order to shrink her sentence. She was murdered in a failed drug sting in 2008 and discovered two days later in a gorge, covered in a makeshift shroud made from her own Grateful Dead sweatshirt and an orange-and-purple sleeping bag.
Though what transpired with Hoffman is undeniably a harrowing tragedy, her bravery hasn’t gone unnoticed and her life surely not forgotten.
The jubilee that focuses its efforts on honoring the memory of Rachel kicks off with a pre-party on May 7. The music continues throughout the entirety of the weekend with yoga workshops, live artwork by Alex and Allyson Grey and a variety of melodic feels and silent discos for all the night owls. One of the most sacred parts of the Spirit of Suwannee is the river and nature that runs through the grounds; there is something extraordinarily special about this place!
Rope swingin’ and music ringin’, Suwannee not only offers you some of the most exclusive camping options and freedom to enjoy yourself, but also pairs all of that alongside top-notch performers and production. You better believe you can count on Purple Hatter’s Ball to bang out another unforgettable fest.
From the inspirational words and soul-felt spiritual vibes of Nahko and Medicine for the People, to the recoiling rhythms and flawless melody of Random Rab’s experimental contribution to electronic music, festival goers will be able to enjoy an excellent lineup with a wide range of music that appeals to everyone.
If you made it to Aura last year, you caught the last time Lotus took to the amp stage at the SOSMP. I think we can all agree that a full two-hour Lotus set in the heart of the amphitheater stage will certainly be a special Lotus set to be a part of. Loaded with a jaw dropping light rig and phenomenal acoustics, Lotus will bring the heat needed to set the crowd on fire.
Besides all of the headliners, there are great deals of up-and-coming bands that smash Suwannee crowds time and time again, earning their name amongst growing crowds. If you haven’t already, make sure to catch the Roosevelt Collier’s Suwannee Jam to catch a glimpse of these artists at large, performing on a whim of improvisation and substitutions on instruments the Collier Jam never disappoints.
Purple Hatters Ball unifies the humans of Suwannee in hopes of bringing everyone together to collectively, invest our best and smile in honor the valiant life of a dear member of the Suwannee community. At 6 p.m. on Saturday, Momma Margie, Rachel Morningstar Hoffman’s mother, will give a speech to rejoice her beloved daughter and release hundreds of butterflies in celebration of Rachel’s life.
Tickets are on sale online. Grab them now before the $30 spike at the gate.
Feature photo courtesy of: YouTube