The Houston Chronicle

Friday night bluegrass at the Floyd Country Store
by Amy C. Balfour, Lonely Planet, April 3, 2007

If a man named Shirley ever asks you to dance, don’t ponder the invitation for too long. At least not at the Floyd Country Store on a Friday night. In fact, if you don’t say yes pretty darn quick, you’ll likely be trampled by the flat-footers who’ve accepted his offer, and are now rushing past like their feet are on fire.

Shirley Ferris is a dance caller at the Friday Night Jamboree, a weekly bluegrass jam smack in the center of tiny Floyd, Va. On Friday nights this former country market is the center of the bluegrass universe, its well-worn timbers creaking under the weight of 200-odd music lovers packed inside.

Floyd is just one stop along The Crooked Road — a 253 mile driving trail celebrating Virginia’s bluegrass heritage (www.thecrookedroad.org). The route winds through the state’s southwestern mountains and valleys, connecting bluegrass-friendly museums, stores and music venues. Bright banjo-emblazoned signs appear every five miles or so, reminding travelers that this isn’t your everyday musical road trip.

Read more at The Houston Chronicle.

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