Get ready to rock with the Pa. Cigar Box Guitar Festival


The term cigar box guitar conjures a few images: homemade instruments, made with found materials, maybe being played by hobos during the Depression while someone heats a can of beans over an open fire.

That's not what the Pennsylvania Cigar Box Guitar Festival is about.

Today's cigar box guitars are electric. They're played on a stage with other homemade instruments, such as a one-string bass and a washboard rhythm section.

Sure, the base is a cigar box. But the fire these days is coming from the strings, and the beans might be found alongside tacos from a nearby food truck.

Saturday: The sixth annual Pennsylvania Cigar Box Guitar Festival runs 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 29, at the York Emporium, 343 W. Market St. in York City.

There will be two stages, one in the store's parking lot and one inside the shop, according to organizer Jim Lewin, owner of the used bookstore.

Audiences will hear from 14 bands from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Maryland and Alabama, Lewin said in a news release, and the festival will be broadcast live on White Rose Community TV and live-streamed on YouTube.

Along with the music, there will be food trucks, a beer garden and street performers along the block as well as vendors from around the region.

And yes, the festival is free.

The festival is sponsored by York Water Co., Mr. Suit Records, Royal Square Development and CP2S.

For more information, check out Pennsylvania Cigar Box Guitar Festival on Facebook.