LEONARDTOWN, Md. — Down a winding dirt road off Route 5, fields sprawl toward the horizons and farming equipment dot the landscape. Bluegrass music can be heard as the road ends and the event grounds begin.

Stringed instruments twanged and voices warbled as the 28th annual L’il Margaret’s Bluegrass Festival continued on at Goddard Farm despite the heat this weekend.

Event-goers could expect to enjoy the flowing groups during the three-day-long festival: Little Roy Lewis and Lizzy Long, Goldwing Express, Annapolis Bluegrass Coalition, Kody Norris and the Watauga Mountain Boys, Charley Thompson and Bottom County Bluegrass, 15 Strings, Code Blue, Mark Templeton and Pocket Change, The Hillbilly Gypsies, Junior Sisk and Ramblers Choice, and Josh Grimsby and County Line.

The group Josh Grigsby and County Line take the stage Saturday afternoon.

Although she didn’t have a favorite group, Margaret Goddard said that she enjoyed all of the groups that performed from Thursday to Saturday evening.

“This festival is in honor of my daughter who died in a car accident. She loved all kinds of music, not just bluegrass. So my husband and I plan this event every year as a way to honor her,” said Goddard.

She mentioned two people close to the festival having passed away this year, and a portion of the event program was dedicated as a memorial to them and others.

“Barbara Ann Boatright is my niece and Buddy McCoy is a very dear friend of ours. Both of them will be missed very much by us at the bluegrass [festival], by their families and others. I’m certain they’re looking down from heaven enjoying the festival,” said Goddard.

Other people honored in the event program include: Clay Peterson, Betty Mills, William Roland Hale Sr., Vic Teashunt, Skitter Huchinson, Lucky Knowling, Howard Keatts, Joesph Sydner, Betty Shipley, Jake Langley, James King, J.B. Elliott, Ralph Stanley, Ray Hesson Sr., Chuck Stearman and Pati Crooker.

Not as many people were coming to the festival as they had in the past, Goddard remarked.

“Maybe it’s the heat. Or maybe it’s because not so many younger people like bluegrass. Most of the people here are getting older,” said Goddard.

Event-goers who made the hot journey out to the event treated themselves to country fare fresh from the kitchen such as a ham and cabbage dinner with whole potatoes or a turkey dinner with mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing and choice of beans or corn. Other items available for purchase at the event were apple dumplings with a scoop of ice cream or giant ice cream sandwich bars.

Getting to meet up with the community at the event is Goddard’s favorite part of hosting the event.

“It’s nice to see the people who can make it and enjoy themselves here,” said Goddard.

Next year’s festival dates have been tentatively scheduled for August 10, 11 and 12.

Festival sponsors include: Ridgell Oil Co., Inc., Winegardener Motor Company LLC., Brothers’ Johnson, Inc., Three Mules Welding Supply Inc., Guy and Guy Masonry, Judi Sterling of Sterling Insurance, A&T Enterprises, The 2017 Cabin Fever event, Bee’s Napa Auto Parts, Bayside Auto Group,The Arcadia Bluegrass Festival, Combs Drury Reeves insurance Agency, Cedar Point Federal Credit Union, Suburban Propane, Printing Press, Inc., Askey Askey and Associates CPA  LLC, Leonardtown Blueprints, Dyson Building Center, McKay’s Fine Foods and Pharmacy, Griffin’s Flooring America, James Goddard Excavating LLC, Bluegrass Concerts Presented by Eastern Shore Bluegrass Association, Kenny’s Flowers, Jack Tippett Construction, Gheen Accounting and Tax Services, T.C. Martin Jewelers, W.M. Davis, Inc.  and Cecil’s Historic District and Country Store.

For more information about the event, check out their website.

Contact Jacqui Atkielski at j.atkielski@thebaynet.com.