Ohio University Eastern, Blame My Roots Fest Team Up | News, Sports, Jobs


Photo by Robert A. DeFrank – Ohio University mascot Rufus the Bobcat joins Ohio University East Dean David Rohall, left, and co-founder of Blame My Roots Fest Chris Dutton on Wednesday to announce a partnership between the college and the country music festival.

Students at Ohio University Eastern are poised to get trained in country music as the campus partners with the Blame My Roots Fest this summer.

Blame My Roots co-founder Chris Dutton and members of his team joined university officials on the OUE campus on Wednesday to make the announcement. Since debuting in 2019 following the hiatus of the long-running Jamboree In The Hills outdoor concert straight across the US 40 from his family’s Valleyview campgrounds, Blame My Roots has grown in popularity and talent. interpreter despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dutton said a partnership with the OUE is particularly fitting, as he and many others have ties to the college.

“It means a lot to us. My parents and I are Ohio University alumni, so to set up this partnership and have Rufus come here on a day like today, to see them is pretty special for us. The Community support is important to us. It’s a newer festival, so getting people out and talking about the festival is really important,” he said.

Dutton added that he learned to appreciate live music on the OU campus in Athens.

In addition to promoting the festival to people connected to the college, Dutton said the festival is looking to expand and hire more staff, and he hopes OUE can help.

“We are looking for the student body here at the university to help us with some opportunities at the festival,” he said. “We have a national live music type event and we can kind of use some students, some faculty here.”

Dutton added that there will likely be around 25 open positions.

“We have a lot of opportunities and a lot of positions,” Dutton said. “There might be someone who is interested in communications here… who would come and could work any position with us, but could see how it works, how an operation like a festival works.

“We are a small team. I think it’s interesting to see what a small team can do with such a big event,” he said. “It just offers a unique experience.”

The university will also invite alumni to a nearby event during the Blame My Roots festivities. Officials said the OUE was fulfilling its mission to invest in the region’s culture.

“We help sponsor the event, and we try to encourage alumni from across Ohio University to come out,” said David Rohall, dean of campus and community relations. “We are going to set up a tent there so that the elders can meet. There will be gifts. … It is a cultural activity that is important for this region.

“Having a festival and having such a big group like Ohio University, that’s pretty cool for us,” Dutton said. “As an alum, being on stage, looking down the hill and seeing Ohio University represented is going to be very special.”

“We’re really going to push it out there with social media,” Rohall said. “We work closely with the Graduate Office. … There are elders all over the state of Ohio. It’s not just going to be us pushing it regionally, they’re going to push it everywhere. »

Rohall mentioned his own musical training as a member of a band in Illinois.

“I know what live music is, and I know what it’s like to get on and off,” he said.

Rohall said students might be interested in job opportunities.

“If anyone wants to get involved in this industry, I think it’s a great opportunity for them,” he added.

“I think it’s a great opportunity. I think this is an exciting opportunity for the campus,” said Casara Orr, a first-year nursing student from St. Clairsville. “I have a ton of high school friends in the area who went to the Blame My Roots festival, even last year. … It’s a very exciting event. I’m a music lover, so many of my friends love music. We would all go to the event. It seems like a good thing to bring big music to a small valley.

Other students accepted.

“I think this is a great opportunity for people who attend OUE and all campuses, as well as alumni,” said Larissa Orr of St. Clairsville, who studies early childhood education and social work. “It’s a great opportunity to bring everyone together and celebrate life, music and all that God gives us.”

Students wishing to apply for staff positions can speak to their professors or contact the festival directly through the Blamefest.com website.

The festival will take place July 14-16 at Valleyview Campground in Belmont and will feature country music stars such as Dierks Bentley, David Lee Murphy and Niko Moon.



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