Moon River Festival 2022 presented by Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors is a two-day festival held at Coolidge Park in Chattanooga, Tennessee. This year’s lineup included amazing artists like Local Natives, Lucius, Band Of Horses, Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors, The National and Leon Bridges. The musicians I covered at this festival were Daniel Nunnellee, Wild Rivers, Mat Kearney, Briston Maroney, Greensky Bluegrass, Lucius, Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors, Zack Bryan, The National, Maggie Rose, Abraham Alexander, and Sammy Rae & The Friends.
This year, Moon River was met with severe weather, which flooded the park, therefore resulting in the cancellation of Day 2. As a result I was not able to fully cover the entire festival as planned.
I trudged through the rain and mud on Day 1. However it was another exciting venture covering another festival in this beautiful city. Everything went smoothly and quickly. There were two stages, Poplar and Iris. There were several food and drink options available as well as water stations. Before I knew it, the day was almost over. The National ended the night.
I was excited for Day 2. I arrived at the festival fully prepared for another full day of incredible artists. Sammy Rae & The Friends were on stage, performing their 3rd song, when Sammy stopped mid song and announced that they were asked to stop performing and that the venue was being evacuated. Another official announcement followed soon after. I looked up at the sky and noticed dark and heavy rain clouds creeping up towards us. I walked out of the park with other fellow photographers and sought shelter at the Artist Lounge at the building across the street from the park, for the duration of the storm. We were there for a couple of hours.
Once the storm passed and we waited for further instructions, Drew Holcomb and Ellie Holcomb brought out their guitars to the parking lot and decided to sing a couple of songs for the crowd as they waited. People were anxiously waiting outside as city officials inspected the festival grounds. Not too long after, the organizers announced that the rest of the festival was canceled. JP Saxe shortly announced on his social media that he will play an acoustic set at the parking lot.
Drew Holcomb managed to organize a show at Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium featuring Abraham Alexander, Drew Holcomb, Ellie Holcomb, JP Saxe, Local Natives, and Sammy Rae that same night. With a surprise appearance from Charley Crockett and Leon Bridges. Although the cancellation was unfortunate, it was good to hear that Drew Holcomb made the effort to salvage the day for all festival goers.