More than 80 campsites at Dauphin’s Countryfest are unusable due to soggy grounds, despite grading work finished last fall to fix drainage concerns.
The work included scraping the land to direct rainwater away from the campground’s problem areas, but an endless winter and a wet spring delayed grass from growing and the land remains saturated.
“Last year we had about five inches of rain three days before the event and there were some camp spots that had water in them,” Countryfest president Eric Irwin said. “We were proactive and ... recontoured some of those spots.”
But the latest storms in the area have left those areas too muddy to park or camp.
Irwin said the number of affected campsites is a drop in the bucket, since there are more than 4,300 total spots on Selo Ukraina — the festival site located south of Dauphin — split between the upper and lower campgrounds.
Those affected will simply be relocated to other spots, which Irwin said isn’t a problem since they purchased six acres in the last year to expand.
“We’re going to operate just fine.”
Along with grading, the roads have all new gravel for which the festival spent about $100,000, Irwin said.
“We redid all of the roads to make sure that it can rain as hard as it wants and people can still get up and down them.”
Countryfest officials are making every effort to contact the registered site owners of the affected campsites.
Organizers are telling any affected campers to report to the parking lot behind the lower will-call booth upon arrival. Organizers will direct campers where to go.
Festival gates opened yesterday.
» Twitter: @grjbruce