Living legend Emmylou Harris is kicking off the first annual Woofstock, a daylong music festival benefitting the singer’s dog-rescue foundation Bonaparte’s Retreat, on August 18th. The benefit, which will feature animal-centered vendors and services along with additional performances by artists such as Buddy Miller and Ella Mae Bowen, will take place at the Fontanel Mansion in Nashville, Tennessee.
Bonaparte’s Retreat, named for a dog of Harris who was her “travelling companion [who] went everywhere with [her] for ten years” until his death in 2002, was created to rescue dogs described as unadoptable by the Nashville Humane Association and now looks to those dogs who have run out the clock for their stays at Metro Nashville Animal Control. As Harris told Billboard, “There are as many as 1,000 animals per month that Metro Animal Control puts down. By law, they can only keep them so long. If nobody shows up to rescue a happy and healthy soul that can enrich someone’s life. It’s heartbreaking to think about, but they have to be put down to make way for the hundreds of animals that come in because people don’t spay and neuter their pets.”
While Bonaparte’s Retreat currently focuses on dogs only, Harris hopes to expand the program both to rescue cats and to partner with Children’s Services, Room at the Inn, and Crossroads Campus, providing animal-centered rehabilitation – and hope.
Dogs available for adoption will be waiting for their forever homes at the festival, and Harris reminds attendees that they can bring their own dogs, too, as there will even be a “dog beach with umbrellas.”
Harris, who has released 21 solo albums and won 12 Grammys, takes joy in her activism as well a her music, saying, “It’s great to be able to work at something you love. Sometimes I have to pinch myself and now I am able to do something else that I love, which is to rescue animals.”
So if you’ll be in the Nashville area, help bring more joy to Harris and waiting canines by working the festival as a volunteer or purchasing a $20 ticket–children and dogs admitted free!