A look back at this weekend’s events

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The four-day festival in Bloomington kicked off Thursday with its traditional opening concert at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater featuring Cape singer Veerdan Lucibela. At Dunn Meadow later that night, Matixando set the scene with original world forest music by Costa Rican singer-songwriter David Dávila González.

After two years with additional pandemic precautions, the Lotus World Music & Arts Festival this year will look more like the one you might remember from Before Times.

Can’t make it downtown? Listen to WFHB for live performances and interviews with the 2022 festival artists. Tune in to 98.1 or 93.1 FM, or watch the stream online.

Bring back Lotus:World Music Festival to showcase more international artists, new scene of local artists

Throughout the weekend, performers from around the world will take to the stage in tents, churches and other venues around the city. Here’s a preview of what’s to come.

Lotus in the park

Festival goers dance during Lotus in the Park at Switchyard Park in 2021.

Head to Switchyard Park on Saturday afternoons for outdoor shows, demonstrations, activities, merchandise and more. Parking is limited, so walking, cycling and carpooling are encouraged.

Kardemimitt, Nyansapo Highlife Band and the Flying Balkan Laikas will perform on the main stage, with a special opening performance by the Indiana Slavic Choir.

Lemon Bucket Orkestra is back for the Lotus Festival Parade

Lemon Bucket Orkestra will lead the Lotus Festival Parade at 8:30 p.m. Saturday.

Friday and Saturday Lotus Concerts

Catch musicians from around the world throughout the day on Friday and Saturday. World-class artists come from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America. There is also a new local Lotus Stage to showcase local talent with deep cultural ties.

Here is an overview of the partial program (find a complete program on lotusfest.org)

Anna Wegelius sings Friday night as Kardemmimit performs at First United Methodist Church at a previous Lotus World Music & Arts Festival.

Friday performers:

  • BAZURTO ALL STARS
  • BLATO ZLATO
  • CEDRIC WATSON & CREOLE BIJOU
  • SUMMER.
  • FLYING BALKAN LAIKAS
  • JOANNA HYDE & TADHG Ó MEACHAIR
  • KARDEMIMMIT
  • ORKESTRA LEMON BUCKET
  • NYANSAPO HIGHLIFE BAND
  • SALAAM
  • SEFARIN
  • VAN-ANH VO
  • VOLO BOGTROTTERS
Brad Leftwich & The Humdingers, including Leftwich, left, and Linda Higginbotham, record a performance September 12 for the 2020 Virtual Lotus Festival at the Lotus Firebay.  (Rich Janzaruk/Herald-Times)

Saturday artists:

  • BLATO ZLATO
  • BRAD LEFTWICH AND THE HUMDINGERS
  • CEDRIC WATSON & CREOLE BIJOU
  • SUMMER.
  • FEDDERSEN, GOURLEY AND MILLER
  • FLYING BALKAN LAIKAS
  • FORGOTTEN TRIBE
  • KARDEMIMMIT
  • LADAMA
  • ORKESTRA LEMON BUCKET
  • NYANSAPO HIGHLIFE BAND
  • PUULUP
  • SEFARIN
  • VAN-ANH VO
Big Cheese Food Truck workers take orders from a line of customers during the first Food Truck Friday of 2021 at Switchyard Park.  (Photo: Rebecca Tabor/Herald Times)

Beer, wine and food trucks

Lotus’ Food Truck Village is back, hosted by The Chocolate Moose. It’s open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday on Kirkwood Avenue between Washington and Lincoln streets. Here is a list of trucks you can find:

  • Burger Arepa
  • flowery burger
  • BloomingBowls (no Friday noon)
  • Doner Kebab
  • Eatzo Concessions
  • Great White Smoke (Friday only)
  • La Poblana Taco Truck
  • Pili Party Tacos
  • Pino Garden Café (Friday only)
  • Rasta Pops (weather dependent)
  • The big cheese
  • chocolate moose
  • Wacky Bunzzz
  • Wevers Smoke Eaters BBQ
  • Bloomington’s Kona Ice (Saturday only)
A seasonal fruit bowl and a Mexican Bunzz sandwich by Wacky Bunzz.  (Photo: Carol Kugler/Herald-Times)

A shorter list of vendors will have food available at Lotus in the Park from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, featuring Chocolate Moose, Doner Kebab, Pili’s Party Taco and La Poblana.

Lotus has partnered with Bloomington Brewing Co. and Upland Brewing Co. to supply beer, wine and soft drinks to large venues. For the outdoor tents, Cardinal Spirits will also offer canned cocktails.

Local beverage companies also offer festival-themed merchandise. Visit Needmore Coffee Roasters to try Lotus Backstage Coffee Blend. Upland Brewing Co. also offers a Lotus Pale Ale made with local Mackinac hops.

Art installation returns from Burning Man

A kinetic sculpture created in Bloomington that traveled to Burning Man in 2019 is back in town. It is the first major installation to be part of the Lotus Festival Arts Village. Visitors can interact with it to see it come alive with light, sound and music.

Learn more about ‘Archaeopteryx’:Interactive sculpture returns from Burning Man to Bloomington for Lotus Fest

Relax on Sunday and catch one last show

Breathe Saturday with the Unwind Yoga Festival, from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Far Center for Contemporary Arts. Participants must bring their own water and equipment.

As usual, Sunday’s concert (free if you wear your $15 Lotus 2022 pin) will wrap up the festival. It features Freddersen Gourley and Miller on twin fiddles and guitar, and Amaan and Ayaan Ali Bangash on Indiana Classical sarod.

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