Best Music Festival - 2009
McDowell Mountain Music Festival
Perfect spring and fall weather make Arizona an ideal location for music festivals. There's none better than McDowell Mountain Music Festival. Like any other festival, this smallish hippie gathering at WestWorld in Scottsdale draws acts we love (The Flaming Lips) and acts we're not so crazy about (Hasidic reggae star Matisyahu). But no matter who's playing, it's always a great environment. The staff is friendly, the grass on WestWorld's polo grounds (the same sort of setting used for Coachella in California) is soft enough to warrant slipping off your sandals, and the food and drinks are reasonably priced. The New Age-y vendor area is actually an enjoyable diversion, filled with hippie artisans instead of over-tanned girls promoting liquor. Oh, and unlike most other "festivals" in town, there's actually on-site camping available! Music lovers should pencil this festival in for the last weekend of April, even before they know who's playing.