Press Release 8-20-11 – Seneca Big Splash Sept 4


For Immediate Release:

Seneca Lake Big Splash, Sunday September 4, Hector Fairgrounds on State Route 414 just north of Watkins Glen 11:00 am- 9:00 pm. Ten Bands, Two Stages

Presented by the Finger Lakes CleanWaters

Fan us on fbook @ Seneca Lake Big Splash

The Big Splash concert series is headed to the Finger Lakes Wine Trail. On Sunday, September 4th The Finger Lakes CleanWaters Initiative will bring the Finger Lakes GrassRoots Festival Dance Tent to the Hector Fairgrounds to protect New York State waters and businesses from dangerous natural gas drilling. Seneca Lakes waters are threatened, not only from Shale Gas Fracking but also from pending expansion of LPG Storage. Please come out and help us protect and celebrate and our Number One Economic Resource.

The Seneca Big Splash will feature Hector native Willy Watson of “Old Crow Medicine Show” backed by banjo virtuoso Richie Stearns and the Evil City String Band, Two time Grammy Award winner Jim Lauderdale, Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion, Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad, Driftwood, Dutch Bucket System,The Burns Sisters, The Green Deeps, and The Double E.

The cost of the event is a $10.00 Suggested Donation. Kids twelve and under are free accompanied by a parent.

This clean water awareness event is sponsored by the Finger Lakes GrassRoots Festival of Music and Dance, Hazlitt Winery, Damiani Winery,The Rasta Ranch, Two Goats Brewing, Hector Wine Company,Poplar Ridge Vineyards, The Full Plate Farm CSA, Dano’s Heuriger on Seneca, Shalestone Winery, Sheldrake Winery, Stonecat Cafe’, Gas Free Seneca, Hector Clean Waters, Frack Action, NYRAD, Back to Democracy, CPNY, WITH, WRUR, Upstate Live, and Brewers Sanitary.

On site vehicle camping will be available for $10 a person day of show. Camping will also be available on Saturday Sept. 3rd for those of you who want to come enjoy the wine trail on the day before the show. Also, for those of you who have long distances to travel, this will allow you to come the night before and be fresh for the show in the morning! No reservations needed, simply show up and pay at the event.

Food and drink will be available from some of your favorite restaurants, winery’s, and brewery’s on site. Additionally, the Town of Hector is home to award winning winery’s and restaurants. A grocery and veggie stands are close by.

The wine and associated tourism industry are the driving economic engines in this region. The proposed LPG facility poses dire consequences for our economy, our health, and our whole way of life.” Yvonne Taylor—Gas Free Seneca

We are at a crossroads in the FingerLlakes Region, the choice before us is whether to continue to promote and nurture a multi-billion dollar sustainable tourism and winery industry, or to change course. The two industries cannot coexist. Sustainable tourism is dependent on a delicate ecosystem and gas drilling and storage will partially if not wholly destroy that ecosystem.”   – Lou Damiani, Damiani Wine Cellars, Hector, NY

Wine and shale gas do not mix, part of our goal is to raise public awareness of this simple fact” – Chris Tate, FingerLakes CleanWaters Initiative


Jim Lauderdale, Two time Grammy Award Winning Country Legend is a multi-talented performer and songwriter, with successes in both country and bluegrass music. His roots stem from the Carolinas, yet his career has taken him all over the United States and abroad, making him an international recording artist with an ever-growing fan base. Jim won “Artist of the Year” and “Song of the Year” at the first “Honors and Awards Show” held by the Americana Music Association in 2002. Subsequently, he has hosted this same show for the last seven years. More at

Hector Native Willie Watson, backed by banjo legend Richie Stearns and the Evil City String Band. Willies latest release with “Old Crow Medicine Show”, Tennessee Pusher was produced by Don Was. The album reached #1 on the Billboard Top Bluegrass Albums Chart. Old Crow Medicine Show (OCMS) have come full circle playing their own brand of American roots music with a rock and roll attitude. They settled for a year in North Carolina, where they ran into a bit of good fortune while playing in front of a local pharmacy to an impressed Doc Watson; the folk icon promptly scheduled the band to play at his MerleFest.

Soon after, OCMS relocated to Nashville and found themselves gracing the stage of the Grand Ole Opry, touring with Merle Haggard and regularly appearing on NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion. They have made a name for themselves as energetic performers with an unbridled spirit. More at

Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion. The Guthrie legacy continues from Woody through Arlo and now the incredible Sarah Lee with Johnny Irion. Exploration, their first album together in 2005, and Bright Examples (Ninth Street Opus Records, Feb. 22, 2011), their new, full-length collaborative project featuring producers Andy Cabic (lead singer/songwriter in the band Vetiver) and Thom Monahan (Devendra Banhart, Vetiver), has been one nonstop whirlwind of activity. Not only has the couple toured extensively both as a duo and as part of the “Guthrie Family Rides Again” tour (with Sarah Lee’s dad, Arlo Guthrie), they’ve also released the children’s album Go Waggaloo (Smithsonian Folkways), a live DVD entitled Folk Song. cont. Recently featured on the Carson Daly show, more at

Educational Guest Speakers:

Dr. Sandra Steingraber, award winning author and biologist will highlight a roster of noted scientists and educators that will address music fans between the bands.

Dr. Robert W. Howarth Phd. Dr. Howarth’s research into methane emissions and leakage lead to the recent headline. “Coal Dirtier than Methane”.

Dr. Adam Law, M.D.: Dr. Law will speak of his experiences in treating patients for the Health Effects of Hydrofracking.

We will be adding to our list of speakers as they confirm.


Recognizing New York’s Finger Lakes as some of the cleanest waters in North America, the Finger Lakes CleanWaters Initiative’s mission is to protect and defend the natural, recreational, and commercial integrity of the waters of the Finger Lakes and beyond. We do this by hosting awareness events to promote clean water. To this end, we have partnered locally with the Finger Lakes Grassroots Festival, Gas Free Seneca, Hector Clean Waters, and other citizen groups to produce the Seneca Lake Big Splash, to raise awareness of the pending industrialization of the Finger Lakes.

The Big Splash will draw together through the power of music, concerned citizens, educators, commercial interests (vintners, recreational, agricultural), and environmental advocacy organizations, focusing ultimately on methodologies to ensure sustainable clean drinking and recreational waters, in the Finger Lakes, NYS, and beyond.

The Seneca Lake Big Splash will provide a focal point for the community to come together for discussion, education, celebration, and mutual support. Of particular concern are the recent intrusions of gas interests enabled by the wide sweeping exemptions to the Clean Water Act, contained in the 2005 Federal energy bill. Horizontal and Vertical High Volume Slick Water Hydrofracking are understood to be a direct and imminent threat to the health and integrity of the citizens of the Finger Lakes and New York State at large.

The proposed expansion of pressurized storage of LPG and LNG in deep subterranean salt caverns beside and below Seneca Lake by Inergy Corporation is of particular concern in lieu of the steadily increasing catastrophic incident rate at these facilities on a national level. Also of major concern is the traffic (rail and truck), congestion, and in particular the proposed massive brine pond that would hover just above Seneca Lake, at Salt Point in the town of Reading, NY.

We hope that everyone will come out and dance and celebrate the beauty that surrounds us. Please join us in the fight to defend and preserve the clean waters of the Finger Lakes and beyond.

Media Contacts:

For the Big Splash:

Jon McNamara: 607 761-1572

Chris Tate 607 387-9285 office, 607 351-3768 mobile


For Jim Lauderdale

Donica Christensen

Office: 615-297-6890


For Gas Free Seneca:

Yvonne Taylor: 607 342-1278,


For Hector Clean Waters

Shirley Barton 607 387-9224


For Sarah Lee Guthrie and Johnny Irion