FRONT ROYAL — Bluegrass and folk music fans will descend onto the area for the 2018 Appaloosa Music Festival held this weekend at the Skyline Ranch Resort.

Hosted by D.C.-area band Scythian, the festival will feature over 20 bands in the bluegrass, country, folk, and Celtic genres. Along with Scythian, the weekend’s headliners will be Gaelic Storm and Mandolin Orange. Other bands scheduled to appear include Town Mountain, Humming House, Six-String Soldiers, Karikatura, and Fireside Collective.

Since the festival started in 2014, at least 5,000 people have attended the music festival each year. Dan Fedoryka, one of the co-founders of Scythian, confirmed that more than 7,500 attendees are expected for this year’s festival.

Fedoryka said that part of the growth was due to a $9,000 grant that was given to the festival by the Virginia Tourism Corporation as part of the 2018 Music Festival Sponsorship Program. Fedoryka said the grant allowed festival organizers to secure more talent for the weekend.

“It was a huge feather in our cap,” Fedoryka said. “It was a vote of confidence from the state of Virginia.”

Since its inception, the festival has attracted artists, volunteers, and fans from around the country with an environment that harkens back to an “old-school community feeling.” Fedoryka said that the sense of togetherness with the community is what makes Appaloosa shine.

“It’s a great melting pot of like-minded people,” Fedoryka said. “It’s really a magical environment every year.”

Aside from the musical performances, the festival will include other activities such as a craft and vendor village, a jam tent for people who want to play their own instruments, and an indoor late-night jam that brings the festival’s bands together and allows festivalgoers to interact with the talent.

Skyline Ranch Resort will be offering on-site accommodations, ranging from cabins and RVs to tents for camping. For children, there will be a kids’ zone that will include bouncy houses, face painting, and a children’s music program.

Single-day tickets are available at the gate for $25 for adults and $10 for kids ages 13-17. A 10 percent discount is available for active duty military personnel, and veterans and kids 12 and under get in for free. Parking for a single day will be $10. It is $20 to park for the weekend. There are also ticket packages available for all three days and for events like the late night jams, at an extra cost.

Ten percent of all festival profits are donated to charity. This year’s beneficiaries will be Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Appaloosa Blue Ridge Arts Foundation.

For more information on the festival or to pre-purchase tickets, visit