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A two-day music festival staged at Blue Mountain Ski Area

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    TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS Jessica Harp, left, blares out a tune with fellow band members during the Rock the Fall Festival Sunday at the Blue Mountain Ski Area in Palmerton.
Published October 12. 2009 05:00PM

Country music never sounded quite so good at Blue Mountain Ski Area.

That's thanks in large part to a talented handful of artists who performed Sunday at the second-annual "Rock the Fall Festival."

The two-day event featured live concerts and events held outside the Valley Lodge.

Country music buffs flocked to the site to hear Jessica Andrews, Josh Gracin, Jessica Harp, Randy Houser, and Jimmy Wayne crank out their top hits.

"I saw you singing along," quipped Harp, who played 10 songs in 45 minutes.

Harp then praised the ski area for its amenities.

"This is a beautiful setting; I've never been here before, thanks for having me," she said. "This wasn't so bad to come off the bus to."

Count Alyssa Ohl of Penn Forest Township among those who said she was impressed by the musical performances.

"My favorite were between the last one [Harp] and the one before it [Gracin]," Ohl said. "It's cold, but it's cheap enough [to afford]."

The reduced ticket prices were a welcome treat, said Amanda Neal of Exeter, Luzerne County.

"We've had fun," Neal said. "For the amount of entertainment, the tickets were reasonably priced."

Ann Keefer of White Haven, Luzerne County, agreed with her friend.

"It's good family fun at an affordable price," Keefer said.

Singer/songwriter Brian Xander of Lehighton, who performed Sunday at the event, said he believes festival organizers should extend the event.

"I think they should do this all summer long," Xander said. "It's a good family time, and there's something for everybody."

The event began Saturday and included acts from Tiffany Giardina, Victory Factory, Honor Society, Drake Bell, and Care Bears on Fire, which replaced KSM, which canceled the day they were supposed to perform.

Jim Dailey, general manager, said the event had a "great turnout."

"The weather affected us Saturday, but today, we couldn't be any happier," Dailey said. "Everyone's having a great time."

Other activities were an Emerald Dragon Karate Demonstration, live music provided by Pair of Nuts, live music provided by Brian Xander, award-winning comedy juggler Steve Caruso, Indian Wild Eagle, Wildlife show Birds of Prey (Carbon County Environmental Ed. Center), Airbrush Tattoo, face-painting, free balloon art by Buster the Clown, giant inflatable slide, mammoth moon bounce, $5 unlimited lift rides,

There were also preseason deals, food and beer, snowsport vendors, area businesses, and arts and crafts vendors.

Dailey said plans are already in the works for next year's event.

"Today couldn't go any smoother," he said. "It's something we're looking forward to doing again next year."

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