The second annual Ozark Cigar Box Guitar Festival will be a family-friendly, one-of-a-kind, two-day event this year with even more in store than last year!  The music festival is located overlooking beautiful Lake of the Ozarks at the Drake Harbor outdoor amphitheater and will be held Saturday, August 4th from 12pm-7pm and Sunday, August 5th from 11am-3pm.

Artists and musicians feature their homemade cigar box guitars, which are made of recyclable materials.  As the name implies, the body is made of an empty cigar box.  The head and neck can be made out of anything from broom handles to wooden slates or sticks and the actual body out of bedpans, skillets and anything in between.  These cigar box guitars will be showcased for sale during the event.  The musicians sell their creations starting at $50 and go up to around $500 on average.  

International touring artists, nationally-recognized and amateur musicians will be playing live bluegrass, rock, country and blues music using their handmade cigar box guitars.  Food and merchandise vendors will contribute to the festivities and there will be a Beer Garden and KCBS sanctioned Back Yard BBQ Competition (with BBQ vendors to boot).    

Ryan Mackey, owner of The Still custom wood work and art has been making the cigar box guitars for many years and sells them in local shops.  “You create this unique masterpiece with your own two hands”, Mackey says.  Mackey is also the organizer of this event and says “bring your family, friends, lawn chairs and tents and join us for a one of the best music festivals in the Ozarks”.  He anticipates the attendance around 1500 people for their second year due to the following of the Cigar Box Guitar enthusiasts and the nationally recognized musicians featured during the event.

The featured performers this year are Lazer Lloyd, Travis Bowlin, A.J. Gaither, Jason Vivone, Stovepipe Perkins and more who will be exclusively playing homemade instruments.

This festival was named #4 of the “Top Five Best Blues Festivals In Missouri” by the American Blues Scene and “we couldn’t be more excited for people to experience fantastic music, great BBQ and cold beer” at such a beautiful venue as Drake Harbor has to offer”, says Lynette Stokes, Director of Benton County Tourism & Recreation and co-organizer, “and further says “now we’re adding another piece to our popular festival by adding the KCBS sanctioned Backyard BBQ Competition”, which is called “Taste of the Ozarks, allowing smokers to showcase their cooking skills to earn cash prizes.” 

This event is sponsored and promoted by the Benton County Tourism & Recreation Commission and co-sponsored by local businesses and the City of Warsaw.  “Without these sponsorships, we couldn’t offer this event for free” says Stokes and “we appreciate the support of our community in bringing festivals such as these to Warsaw.”