In 2020, we again have a discount for preregistration and prepayment of the weekend attendance fees, and additional 10% discounts for Kids (17 or under), Young Adults (18-25), and Seniors (65 or over). There is a 60% discount for non-players (parent, spouse, person responsible for kid). Preregistration for 2, 3, or 4 days will be available online through October 18th, 2020. SIngle day attendees and last-minute attendees can pay at Fiddle Hell itself.
Kids (17 or under) must be accompanied by a registered Adult, Senior, Young Adult, or Non-Player, who has the responsibility of supervising the kid's safe and non-disruptive participation in and attendance at Fiddle Hell Festival activities.
Click on the orange "Register" button below to see 2019 onsite fees. 2020 fees, for preregistration and onsite, are not yet posted. A number of scholarships are available to those who can't afford the fees. While 2020 prizes are yet to be determined, in 2019 those who preregistered for the weekend were entered into drawings for a free weekend at Maine Fiddle Camp in 2020, a free registration (tuition and meals) at one of the Ashokan Camps in 2020, a $100 gift certificate from Johnson Strings / Carriage House Violins, and other prizes.
Getting there (not yet updated for 2020): The Westford Regency is at exit 32 from Rt. 495 (between Rt. 2 and Rt. 3) in Westford, MA. It's about 40-45 minutes by car from Boston, and is very accessible from the North, South, and West as well. The nearest airports are Boston, MA and Manchester, NH. There are commuter rail trains from Boston to several nearby towns including Littleton, MA (5 miles away); check the train schedules to make sure they're actually running when you need them.
Carpooling: You may also be able to share a ride with other Fiddle Hell attendees. We're continuing our self-serve approach in 2019 to arrange carpools from anywhere to Fiddle Hell and back, with an easy to use and well reviewed website (groupcarpool.com) that only requires a browser (no app, no login). Click here to offer rides as a driver in 2019, or to sign up for a carpool as a rider. The free site deals with dates, times, vehicle capacity, and both one-way and round-trip arrangements. You can further coordinate via email or phone. For example, we hope there will be some carpools from Cambridge (perhaps Alewife T stop) and Boston (perhaps near Berklee College of Music). We do advise you that the Fiddle Hell Massachusetts LLC, which runs the Fiddle Hell Massachusetts Festival, is not liable and/or responsible for any injuries, damage, or other adverse events related to carpools arranged fully or partially though this carpool site.
Carpooling is especially interesting if you're coming a long distance, say from Connecticut or Vermont or Virginia or Michigan. Fiddle Hell is not responsible for these carpooling arrangements, but we've heard that this site works exceptionally well. One suggestion: it's a good idea for riders to offer to chip in for gas and other costs. The site will email you if there are any changes to arrangements.
If you prefer an alternative, you can contact other fiddlers through a posting to the Fiddle Hell Facebook Event or to the Fiddle Hell Facebook Group or to Fiddle Hangout. Onsite, there will be a Fiddle Hell message board in the Registration Room where you can ask for or offer rides. It's generally pretty easy to find a ride back home or elsewhere once you're at Fiddle Hell.
Where and When: The Westford Regency Inn at 219 Littleton Road, Westford, MA 01886, combines New England charm with modern amenities, about 45 minutes west of Boston. In 2020, Fiddle Hell will be Thursday (Nov. 5) from 11AM until 3AM, Friday (Nov. 6) from 8:30AM to 3AM, Saturday (Nov. 7) from 8:30AM to 3AM, and Sunday (Nov. 8) from 8:30AM to 6PM. Come join us for a single day or the whole weekend. If you're coming from far, come early or stay on -- there's lots to do and see in the Greater Boston area.
Parking: There are 900 free parking spaces right at the Westford Regency Inn. Do allow a little extra time to park and walk over to the Fiddle Hell Festival. Parking can be tight on Friday afternoon and Saturday, especially for the Saturday night concert. There are a limited number of handicapped parking spaces.
Lodging: The Westford Regency Inn in Westford, MA, has not yet made available the block of sleeping rooms for Fiddle Hell booking. These are generally made available toward the end of January, announced via the FH mailing list and in the FH Facebook group. Once rooms are available, you can call the hotel directly at 978-692-8200. When rooms are sold out, you can ask the hotel to be put on the Fiddle Hell waiting list for rooms.
If you can't get into the Westford Regency directly, you might know someone who has booked a room and wants to share it, or you might be able to find a friend to stay with nearby. One lodging alternative is the sister hotel, the Boxboro Regency, 15 minutes drive to the south on Route 495. The Boxboro Regency will honor the Fiddle Hell rate ($TBD + tax per day); either book online using promo code FHELL, or call their main number 978-263-8701 and ask for the Fiddle Hell rate. The discount applies to rooms booked for Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights. Occasional hotel shuttles will run between the Boxboro Regency and the Westford Regency. There are also several closer hotels in Westford (across the street and a mile down the road); these don't offer a FH rate.
Food: The Westford Regency will have breakfast buffets, Clark's Pub, and the restaurant. The hotel will offer several quick buffets during the weekend and will sell tasty and generally healthy sandwiches, salads, coffee and snacks outside the FH Registration room. There are also many other restaurants (fast food and more upscale) within walking or easy driving distance in Westford.
Are you a cellist flying in from out of state, or a fiddler wanting to borrow a cello and try some cello workshops at Fiddle Hell? Or you might be a mandolin or guitar player with some fiddle experience, but you don't have a fiddle available to bring to Fiddle Hell? Our long-time friends at Johnson String Instrument in Newton Upper Falls, MA, have kindly offered to provide a limited number of loaner instruments onsite at Fiddle Hell in November to help you out.
Johnson String will likely be at Fiddle Hell on Thursday Nov 5th from 11am-6pm, Friday Nov 6th from 11am-6pm, Saturday Nov 7th from 8:30am-6pm, and Sunday Nov 8th from 8:30am-4pm. Just keep Johnson String Instrument and their sales and restoration affiliate Carriage House Violins in mind when you are looking to rent or buy your next string instrument.