Lake Bonisteel Music Association festival makes a return to Pine Grove Park

Lake Bonisteel Music Association (LBMA) is hosting its second annual LBMA Festival this weekend at Pine Grove Park. This free event, held on Saturday from noon to 8 p.m., will feature instrument giveaways for children to help encourage an interest in music. 

“If kids don’t play music, they don’t grow up to be adults who play music,” says Josh Raynard, President of LBMA. “There have been plenty of studies that playing an instrument can help with one’s mood and there are educational factors that music can influence children.”
Art of Conversation is a five-person band from Detroit, stylizing in indie-rock music. 
The majority of LBMA’s board members are musicians or music enthusiasts, so instrument giveaways are important to them. Raynard has worked at Guitar Center for 20 years and says he frequently sees newcomers learn how to play a guitar or people who’ve played the guitar for a long period of time. To Raynard, music exists in everybody’s lives.
“Have you ever watched a movie or a TV show where there’s no background music, or anything going on to set the mood of the setting? It’s very weird and off-putting,” Raynard says. “When you think of radio ads or TV commercials, music is present.”
The festival will be held from noon to 8 p.m. and has no admission cost. is free for family and friends as there will be an instrument petting zoo for children to play brand new instruments – acoustic guitars, banjos, mandolins, ukuleles, hand drums, and a gem bay.
Through the festival, visitors can experience a variety of music ranging from folk, Indie, Eastern European swing rock, blues, soul, and bluegrass. Live music will be showcased throughout the festival featuring artists such as The Luddites, Art of Conversation, The Poltroons, Andruw Thompson, Gopherbroke, Heather Ann the Heathens, and Emory Floyd.
“When BlueChiliGrass Festival started as a backyard event in 2009, it originated with more traditional acoustic instruments. As we’ve slowly progressed, we’ve opened up the genre pool, so we could have other acts for the event,” Raynard says. “LBMA Festival is definitely a little bit heavier, rockier music, whereas BlueChiliGrass Festival is more traditional.”
In addition to music, there will be free crafts for children to make including egg shakers, and local artisans and food vendors will be available such as Moe’s Corner Deli, Coffi, Seed and Soul Society Affiliates, Lounies Soap Co., MotorCity Coneys of Port Huron, Lorrie Preston, Sew What, Yeddie Woods, Mage Curiosities, and Mason Made Crafts.

The Luddites are an eleven-piece acoustic band from Detroit,Upcoming events hosted by LBMA will also benefit children such as the BlueChiliGrass Festival held on Oct. 1 at Goodells County Park. On that day, the Gary Sargent Memorial Music Scholarship Fund will be awarded to children who will have the opportunity to take private music lessons and purchase an instrument of their choosing. Children can apply by sending in their application to,
Additionally, LBMA will hold its fifth annual Orphan Instrument Auction (OIA) in 2023 where the group collects used instruments that musicians will perform with on stage, then auctions them off to raise money to support the nonprofit organization and future scholarship programs.
For more information about sponsorship and details regarding LBMA Festival, visit
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Danielle Patrick is a Chesterfield resident who finds passion in writing about the Port Huron community. In addition to her work with The Keel, she is also a freelancer for Epicenter Mt. Pleasant. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from Central Michigan University and is pursuing her master’s degree in poetry at Southern New Hampshire University. Follow her on Instagram @_daniellepatrick_.