Monday, August 8, 2022

With mother in audience, Bruce Hornsby packs Funhouse Fest Saturday

Lois Hornsby still has all the posters from her son’s years playing music with the Grateful Dead.

A piano player herself, Lois Hornsby has watched her son grow and play music for decades. Bruce Hornsby’s family tree is filled with musicians, including church pianists, so she’s “never too surprised” with what her son does next.

On Saturday, Lois Hornsby sat in a second-row seat at the second annual Funhouse Fest, a Williamsburg concert series organized by her son and headlined by his band, Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers.

“This is such fun for him,” Lois Hornsby said, who lives “right down the road” from the festival venue on the lawn of the Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg.

Hornsby said she came to enjoy the various artists over the weekend and support Bruce.

“I just always cheer him on,” she said, adding she was enjoying many of the other artists in the lineup.

Although Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers headlined the festival, Lois Hornsby said she also was enjoying the other artists’ performances.

Funhouse Fest packed Colonial Williamsburg Friday night. (Sarah Fearing/WYDaily)

Colonial Williamsburg was packed with Hornsby and Grateful Dead fans, some of which traveled hours to attend Funhouse Fest.

Frank Craig, 58, and Lois Quattromani, 61, traveled four hours from Asheville, N.C. to attend Funhouse Fest. The couple won a pair of lawn tickets a week before the festival in a local radio giveaway.

“We have pretty good luck with radio contests, for some reason,” Quattromani said.

Both Quattromani and Craig have been Grateful Dead fans for years and decided to make the long trip for Funhouse Fest.

They plan to stay through Monday and sightsee while they are not at the festival because they have never been to the Williamsburg area.

“My best advice is to book well in advance and make a whole trip out of it,” Craig said. “Do your research and figure out what you want to do, because there’s a lot to see. Make it a three-day trip, minimum.”

Jim Kennedy, owner of the Foodatude food truck, said he scrambled to reserve a space for his truck when this year’s festival was first announced. For Funhouse Fest, he is serving a variety of seafood, including one of his own inventions: the lobster corn dog.

A man working in the Foodatude truck at Funhouse Fest waits at the window for customers to place their orders. (Sarah Fearing/WYDaily)

“Who doesn’t like food on a stick?” Kennedy said.

Kennedy is a longtime fan of the Grateful Dead, like Craig and Quattromani. He had brand new tie-dye shirts made for his staff to wear at the festival, emblazoned with Foodatude’s logo.

Business, Kennedy said, has been booming.

“Last night was crazy, we had a line all night long,” Kennedy said, referring to the festival’s opening night.

Fearing may be reached at

Are you attending Funhouse Fest Sunday? Read about how to prepare here.

Sarah Fearing
Sarah Fearing is the Assistant Editor at WYDaily. Sarah was born in the state of Maine, grew up along the coast, and attended college at the University of Maine at Orono. Sarah left Maine in October 2015 when she was offered a job at a newspaper in West Point, Va. Courts, crime, public safety and civil rights are among Sarah’s favorite topics to cover. She currently covers those topics in Williamsburg, James City County and York County. Sarah has been recognized by other news organizations, state agencies and civic groups for her coverage of a failing fire-rescue system, an aging agriculture industry and lack of oversight in horse rescue groups. In her free time, Sarah enjoys lazing around with her two cats, Salazar and Ruth, drinking copious amounts of coffee and driving places in her white truck.

Related Articles