Beck, Pharrell Williams, Keith Urban and Duran Duran are not who you'd expect to see midweek at a North Fork winery. These chart-topping recording artists are geared up to headline the inaugural FOLD Festival at Martha Clara Vineyards in Riverhead Tuesday and Wednesday. This two-day rain or shine event will take place on the 200-acre farm, owned by the Entenmann family, under the direction of superstar producer-Chic guitarist Nile Rodgers.
"I wanted to have an event where people not only go there for the artists but for the vibe, to meet new people and have a good time," says Rodgers. "The concept is to have nonstop, continuous music with DJs and bands working together."
Martha Clara is not an obvious choice for a music venue, but for Rodgers it was a no-brainer. "The property is beautiful," says Rodgers. "I thought it would be a perfect location."
Despite the one-lane road going in, the organizers are confident that their traffic plan is solid and will keep the road flowing.
"We are looking to eliminate main road congestion," says Molly O'Connor, Martha Clara's event manager. "With the police and security presence, we see no problem whatsoever getting people in off the road and onto the property as soon as possible."
You must be prepared going into a festival of this magnitude. Here's a rundown of what you need to know.
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The show takes place in a 5-acre horse paddock on the property. There's a main stage and a DJ tent holding up to 10,000 people. There are three levels of tickets: A general admission ticket, $137 per day ($95 for Town of Riverhead residents), allows you to roam the open floor in front of the stage.
For $399 per day, you get the VIP treatment, which includes a covered garden area to view the show, a full dinner with a cocktail hour (includes two beverages), private bathrooms and an entrance through the VIP area. Those who kick it up to the $999 per day "Ultra VIP" experience get that plus a private viewing area of the stage, access to the artist compound, bag check, massages, wine tastings and golf cart transportation around the site, among other perks.
General admission concertgoers can choose from food trucks offering wood-fired pizza, burgers, hand-cut fries, hot dogs and tropical drinks. For dessert, try sweet crepes, pastries and ice cream.
A beer and wine tent will sell Heineken and Strongbow brews, while Martha Clara offers its wines, such as Northern Solstice Blanc, merlot and riesling.
VIP guests will be treated to shooters of corn, shrimp and local tomatoes, a guacamole station, smoked pulled chicken sliders, Montauk tuna sloppy joes, mac and cheese, farm stand table salads with 20 different toppings and a cash bar.
Ultra VIP guests will also find a cash bar and local shellfish raw bar and will be served New England clam chowder, lobster rolls, corn salad, Montauk tuna sloppy joes, smoked pulled chicken sliders and grilled Polish town kielbasa.
Keep the party going at the Suffolk Theater with world-renowned DJs spinning into the night as the bar remains open until 4 a.m. Some FOLD artists and special guests are expected to attend. Tickets are $49 (suffolktheater.com).
FOLD FESTIVALWHEN | WHERE 6 to 11 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday at Martha Clara Vineyards, 660 Herricks Lane in Riverhead. Parking begins at 4 p.m. with doors open at 5.
INFO 631-298-0075, foldfestival.com
ADMISSION $95-$999 Town of Riverhead residents can purchase tickets at Martha Clara tasting room or at the Suffolk Theater (must show ID)
Tuesday, Aug. 4
Beck, Pharrell Williams, Keith Urban, Chuck D, Eric B, Thomas Gold, Paloma Faith, The Martinez Brothers and Chic featuring Nile Rodgers.
Wednesday, Aug. 5
Duran Duran, Chaka Khan, Janelle Monae, Grandmaster Melle Mel, Q-Tip, Slander, GTA, Snoh Aalegra and Chic featuring Nile Rodgers.
RULES No outside food or beverages allowed. No chairs or any other sitting devices permitted (other than wheelchairs), although small blankets can be brought in.
There are three ways to get to the FOLD (Freak Out Let's Dance) Festival:
BY CAR Enter at 660 Herricks Lane -- the vineyard's tasting room entrance on Sound Avenue will be closed. There's parking for 4,800 cars and the lot opens at 4 p.m. each day. No tailgating.
BY TRAIN Take the Long Island Rail Road to Riverhead station, then get on a looping shuttle to the festival site. It also picks up at Suffolk Theater at 118 E. Main Street in Riverhead (lirr42.mta.info).
BY BUS The Hampton Jitney is running $49 round-trip bus service to the shows at 2 p.m. from 43rd Street and Third Avenue in Manhattan. Reservations are required. (631-283-4600, ext. 336, hamptonjitney.com)