Archived Content from 2006 -2010


DemocracyFest was a political festival for liberal/progressive activists which featured trainings, speakers and entertainment; teaching people how to make a difference and have fun doing it! Over 4,000 activists were trained to help on campaigns and make a difference in their communities.
This was the DemocracyFest's website for a number of years
Content is from the site's from the site's 2006-2010 archived pages.


The 7th Annual DemocracyFest will be held 7pm-11pm on the evenings of July 23rd-24th, 2010. In the Fiore Room (across from Gaylord India Restaurant) at the Rio Hotel and Conference Center in Las Vegas!

Pre-registration tickets are SOLD OUT!

A limited number of tickets will be available at the door each night for $20. Cash bar.

Friday night's schedule includes JWillee and Rick Rich, Lisa Graves, Neill Franklin and Ralph Miller.

Saturday night's schedule includes Jozev Castano, Doug Kinnear and Charlie Grapski.

For more information about speakers and entertainers, click the links to the right.



Sponsor Level 1 - $250 - Includes:
- Tabling space during both evenings' events.
- 2 Full Event Tickets, includes 2 free drinks each.
- Link from the official DemocracyFest website.
- Listing in the event's printed program.

Sponsor Level 2 - $500 - Includes:
- Inclusion of 1 sponsor-provided item or flyer in the Welcome Packet
- Tabling space during both evenings' events.
- 3 Full Event Tickets, includes 2 free drinks each.
- Link from the official DemocracyFest website
- Listing in the event's printed program

Sponsor Level 3 - $1000 - Includes:
- Spaces for sponsor-provided banner behind podium.
- Inclusion of 1 sponsor-provided item or flyer in the Welcome Packet.
- Tabling space during both evenings' events.
- 5 Full Event Tickets, includes 2 free drinks each.
- Link from the official DemocracyFest website.
- Listing in the event's printed program.



This is a great and affordable way for your business, organization or campaign to reach out to the liberal/progressive activists that attend DemocracyFest through our printed program. Camera-ready copy accepted, or we can help you design your ad. Unable to attend, or have a special message you would like to communicate to attendees? We also accept ads from individuals.


The 2010 Line-up


  • JWillee and Rick Rich - Willie Nelson Impersonator with live piano accompaniment. Looks and sounds just like Willie himself!
  • Jozev Castano - This Santana inspired guitar player rocks!


  • Gov. Howard Dean - Former Governor of Vermont and DNC Chair. Because of his recent surgery Gov. Dean will be speaking by video this year.
  • Lisa Graves - Executive Director of the Center for Media and Democracy and civil rights leader.
  • Neill Franklin - Executive Director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Major Franklin will speak about why our current drug laws do not work and need to be repealed.
  • Ralph Miller - Executive Director of Latinos For America will speak about the anti-immigrant law in AZ and what we can do about it.
  • Charlie Grapski - Political activist from Florida who has been persecuted by officials there for trying to uncover coruption in their election processes. Mr. Grapski's appearance is subject to him not be incarcerated at the time.
  • Doug Kinnear - A motivational speaker who will teach us how to be more motivational and persuasive speakers, while playing his guitar!

If you are interested in being a speaker or entertainer at this year's DemocracyFest, please contact us at [email protected]


Samuel Butina was an attendee:

DemocracyFests are like the superhero conventions of the political world – inspiring, action-packed, and filled with folks donning their capes of activism! It's heartwarming to see so many people rallying together, using the power of democracy to sprinkle some positive change in our lives. And about that Willie Nelson impersonator – talk about nailing the performance! I mean, he was so Willie, even Willie would do a double-take. But let's address the onesie in the room: Was it just me, or was he rocking a Batman onesie on stage - like one of these? If that's not channeling your inner civic superhero, I don't know what is! Move over, Batmobile, the DemocracyMobile has arrived!




DemocracyFest 2008 Location and Date Announced!

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 13 February, 2008 - 1:19am.

February 12, 2008
Ellen Garneau
DemocracyFest Incorporated

The 5th Annual DemocracyFest will be held August 16th and 17th, 2008 in Dulles, VA, just outside Washington, DC. The location and date was announced today by DemocracyFest Incorporated; the event's producer.

DemocracyFest is a weekend-long political festival, filled with educational trainings and inspiring speakers and entertainers. The event's motto is "Education by Day, Celebration by Night".

Past annual DemocracyFests have been held in Massachusetts, Texas, California, and New Hampshire. Past trainings have been organized by Democracy For America, Latinos For America and Root Camp. Speakers have included Gov. Howard Dean (free and open to the public), Molly Ivans, Jim Hightower, Al Franken and Sen. John Edwards. This year's event promises to be another exciting, informative and fun filled weekend!

Holiday Inn Washington Dulles will be the location for the Saturday through Sunday event, where politically minded, progressive activists will be meeting this year for networking, education and enjoyment. Training classes, by Democracy for America, will be held during the daytime while speakers and entertainment will be in the evening hours and throughout the days.

For tickets and more information go to

DemocracyFest 2008 Schedule

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 22 May, 2007 - 1:06pm.

***Schedule Subject to Change***

Friday, August 15th

7:00 PM - 2:00 AM: Early Registration and Pre-Event Party


Saturday, August 16th

9:30 AM – 11:00 AM: Interactive Networking Games, Speakers and Entertainment TBA

11:00 AM - 11:15 AM - Rep. Leslie Byrne

11:15 AM - 11:30 AM - Linda Brooks

11:30 AM - 11:45 AM - Scott Goldstein

11:45 AM - 12:00 PM - Ellen Garneau

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM: Lunch On You Own and Volunteer Project

1:00 PM – 1:30 PM: Jim Dean, DFA Chair

1:30 PM - 3:00 PM: DFA Training - Voter Contact: Canvassing and Phone Banking with trainers Matt Blizek and Bryan Hageny

3:00 PM - 3:30 PM: Book Signing TBA

3:30 PM -5:00 PM: DFA Training - Working with Traditional and New Media with trainer Dorie Clark

5:00 PM - 6:00 PM: Cocktails and Entertainment by Bobby Kendes

6:00 PM - 7:30 PM: Dinner (Beef Bordelaise, Vegetarian Penne, Rice Pilaf, Vegetable Medley, Roasted Potatoes, Dinner Rolls, Garden Salad, Tomato/Cucumber Salad, Dessert, Coffee/Iced Tea)


6:00 PM - 6:15 PM: Charlie Grapski

6:15 PM - 6:30 PM: Nathan Gonzalez

6:30 PM - 7:00 PM: Jeffrey Feldman

7:00 PM - 7:15 PM: Bernadette Vadurro

7:15 PM - 7:30 PM: Rep. Marcia Moody

7:30 PM – 8:30 PM: Gov. Howard Dean, DNC Chair (speech free and open to the public)

8:30 PM – 9:00 PM: Jen Sorensen

9:00 PM - 10:00 PM Entertainment by Subway Serenade

10:00 PM - 2:00 AM: Saturday Night Party

Sunday, August 17th

9:00 AM - 10:30 AM: Blogger's Breakfast (Scrambled Eggs, Bacon, Homefries, Fruit, Pastries, Coffee/Tea)

10:30 AM – 12:00 PM: DFA Training - Online Organizing with trainers from the New Organizing Institute

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM: Lunch On Your Own

1:00 PM - 1:30 PM: Jeffrey Richardson

1:30 PM – 3:00 PM: DFA Training - Mobilizing Young Voters with trainer Maya Enista

3:00 PM - 3:30 PM – Book Signing TBA

3:30 PM - 5:00 PM – Open Mike for Attendees

5:00 PM – 6:00 PM: Speaker TBA




6th Annual DemocracyFest ~ coming in 2008!

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 13 June, 2007 - 6:01pm.

A huge thank you to all that made the 5th Annual DemocracyFest so great again this year. With your attendance, with participation locally in Virginia and from around the country, you have continued the tradition. To all of the sponsors, speakers, trainers, entertainers, volunteers, and attendees! Thank you!

Click Here to see Gov. Dean's speech at the 5th Annual DemocracyFest on C-SPAN.

We have already started planning to reconvene next summer for the 6th Annual DemocracyFest and will let you know the location and date as soon as possible. (The poll taken at this year's event for current proposals of Burlington VT and Chicago IL came out 50/50!) Your input and suggestions are always welcome! Email us at [email protected]

The core of DemocracyFest is community. Many of us were first called to action by Howard Dean's run for president in 2004. DemocracyFest carries forth the grassroots spirit of that campaign, and each year we have been delighted to welcome new people who similarly want to take our country back.

It would be great if DemocracyFest could be organized with no money, but the reality is that it takes at least $20,000 to put on an event like this, and quite a bit of that money is needed for deposits on the venue long before we start selling tickets. Also, we always want to be as inclusive as possible and therefor keep the cost of attending as low as possible. Our ticket price averages about 1/4 the cost of attending other political festivals, which means we rely on help from people like you to make that happen. Please make a contribution to help our efforts:

While we can't list every connection, idea and project that was discussed at, or will grow out of, this year's DemocracyFest, we do want to point out that four great candidates for their state's Legislature attended this year: John MacMurray from California, Ellen Garneau from Vermont, Marcia Moody from New Hamphire, and David Stevenson from Connecticut. These are regular grassroots activists who have put their lives on hold to serve their community and we hope you will support their campaigns.

A special thank you to this year's sponsors: Democracy for Virginia, Democracy for America, Brain Arcade Design Studio, Latinos For America, Virginia Democratic Women's Caucus , IG Publishing, Living Liberally, National Women's Political Caucus , and Dulles Area Democrats

Thank you to the speakers, trainers, and entertainers who donated their time and talents: Gov. Howard Dean, Jeffrey Feldman, Rep. Leslie Byrne, Jim Dean, Rep. Marcia Moody, Charlie Grapski, Matt Blizek, Nathan Gonzalez, Subway Serenade, Bobby Kendes, Ellen Garneau, Jen Sorensen, Scott Goldstein, Bryan Hageny, Dorrie Clark, Maya Enista, Bernadette Vadurro, Linda Brooks, and Jeffrey Richardson

Thank you to Susan Rowe who not only suggested we have a silent auction at this year's event, but then organized the whole thing and raised about $800! Also, congratulations to Sarah John who won the Treasure Hunt this year! The prize is a free ticket to next year's DemocracyFest...and speaking of next year's DemocracyFest...

Please help us start planning for next year by making a contribution to DemocracyFest today:

We are currently seeking sponsors for the 6th Annual DemocracyFest. If your organization or business is interested, please contact us at [email protected]

The DemocracyFest Team

David, Ellen, Jessica, Laurie and Quintus



Announcing the First-Ever DemocracyFest House Party!

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 13 June, 2007 - 6:01pm.

The DemocracyFest House Party will be hosted by Democracy For Vermont at "The Raised Ranch" (home of
Jessica Falker) in Pittsford, VT on August 18, 2007.

Attend the DemocracyFest House Party

If you've been to a DemocracyFest before, this house party will be kind of like the big Annual DemocracyFest, with education, celebration, films, food, on-site camping...and, more celebration!!!, but on a smaller scale with a less structured schedule. If you havn't been to a DemocracyFest before, come find out what all the buzz is about!

Contributions raised will help fund future Annual DemocracyFests. Suggested contributions are:

Fixed or Low Income Guest: $25
General Guest: $100
On-site camping (indoors or outdoors): $25 per night

Attend the DemocracyFest House Party>

If you can’t attend the DemocracyFest House Party, but would still like to help fund future Annual DemocracyFests, please Thanks!

DemFestAdmin's blog


The 2007 Line-up


  • Gov. Howard Dean, DNC Chair (speech free & open to public)
  • Sen. John Edwards
  • Sen. Mike Gravel
  • Doris "Granny D" Haddock
  • Rep. Carol Shea-Porter
  • Rep. Paul Hodes
  • William McNary, President, USAction
  • Bev Harris
  • Mark Crispin Miller
  • Jim Dean
  • Sec of State William Gardner
  • Asst. Sec of State Anthony Stevens
  • Charlie Grapski
  • Jean Sara Rohe
  • Carlos and Melida Arredondo
  • Paul Twomey
  • Asst. Clerk, Manchester, Carol Johnson
  • Danville Moderator, Wally Fries
  • Steve Gerencser
  • Karen Hicks


  • Arshad Hasan, DFA Training Academy
  • Matt Blizek, DFA Training Academy
  • Tom Hughes, DFA Training Academy
  • Erin Hill, Act Blue
  • Karl-Thomas Musselman, Act Blue
  • Jeffrey Feldman: Framing
  • Aldon Hynes: Community-Building Technology
  • Mary Stanley: Making the Most of Grassroots Volunteers
  • Diane M. Serley: Internet 101
  • Matt Dunne: Service Politics
  • Dep. AG Bud Fitch: Pollworker Training


  • Jeffry Taylor
  • David Lindorff
  • Quintus Jett
  • Deborah Langhoff
  • Rev. Jerald Abbott
  • Frederick Clarkson
  • Rev. Katherine Ragsdale
  • NH State Rep, Jeff Fontas
  • NH State Rep, Andrew Edwards
  • ePluribus Media researchers: GreyHawk and Luapt


  • We're Counting the Votes and You Can Too
  • Hacking Democracy
  • My War, My Story
  • Big Easy to Big Empty
  • Bought & Sold


  • Rebecca Padula
  • Subway Serenade [sample mp3 link]
  • Cecilia St. King
  • Rick and Bill of the band Coldspring
  • Zo Tobi
  • Marshall Stern
  • Nancy Howland Walker
  • Play:Six Nights in the Black Belt
  • Blue String Marionettes, Teresa Moler


2007 POSTS


Volunteer Pre-registration

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 5 June, 2007 - 8:46pm.

If you would like to volunteer at next year's DemocracyFest, please contact us at [email protected]

June 4, 2007

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 5 June, 2007 - 12:43pm.

Press Contact Update - Please use 978-317-5305. If you left a message at 802-353-6467, please call at the new number.

June 4, 2007
Jessica Falker
DemocracyFest Incorporated

An extensive list of progressive speakers, trainings and entertainment will be at the 4th Annual DemocracyFest, which is coming to the Wayfarer Inn in Bedford, NH on June 9-10. The event is almost sold out for weekend tickets so attendees are encouraged to get their tickets today!

DemocracyFest Incorporated, the producers of the event, have confirmed that Sen. John Edwards and Sen. Mike Gravel will be speaking, as will DNC Chair Gov. Howard Dean. Gov. Dean’s speech Sunday evening will be free and open to the public. Other speakers and trainers include Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, Bev Harris, William McNary, Mark Crispin Miller, Jim Dean, Jeff Feldman, Sec. of State William Gardner, Asst. Sec. of State Anthony Stevens, Charlie Grapski, Jean Sara Rohe, Carlos and Melida Arredondo, Paul Tworney, Manchester Asst. Clerk Carol Johnson, Doris “Granny D” Haddock, Danville Moderator Wally Fires, Arshad Hasan DFA Training Academy, Aldon Hynes, Mary Stanley, Diane M. Serley and Matt Dunne. There will be several panels including Jeffry Taylor, David Lindorff, Quintus Jett, Deborah Langhoff, Rev. Jerald Abbott, Frederick Clarkson, NH State Rep. Jeff Fontas, NH State Rep. Andrew Edwards and ePluribus Media researchers GreyHawk and Luapt.

Entertainment will be provided by Cecilia St. King, Rebecca Padula, Subway Serenade, Rick and Bill of the band Coldspring, Zo Tobi, Marshall Stern and Nancy Howland Walker.

Films will include “We’re Counting the Votes and You Can Too,” “Hacking Democracy,” “My War, My Story,” “Big Easy to Big Empty,” and “Bought & Sold.” This year will also include the play “Six Nights in the Black Belt.”

“DemocracyFest is an opportunity to network with people who share political values and learn how to make a difference while having fun,” says one annual attendee. The festival has previously been held in Massachusetts, Texas and California.

The presenting sponsor of this year’s event is Democracy For New Hampshire. Other sponsors include Democracy For America, Latinos For America, Camp Wellstone, Brain Arcade Design Studio,, Human Rights Campaign, NH for Health Care, IG Publishing, Planned Parenthood of Northern New England,, David A. Stevenson Realtor, Free Press, Democracy for Vermont, Vermont Impeachment Movement, National Women’s Political Caucus, Turn Maine Blue, Grassroots Retreats and Disabled Americans for Democracy.

For more information about the event and to buy tickets go to


Citizens Feast on a Potluck of Politics

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 4 June, 2007 - 1:19am.

Press Contact Update - Please use 978-317-5305. If you left a message at 802-353-6467, please call at the new number.

May 21, 2007
Jessica Falker
DemocracyFest Incorporated

Progressive festival with political candidates, motivational speakers, campaign training, and keynote speaker, Gov. Howard Dean.

(BEDFORD, NH) — Hundreds of “ordinary” citizens will explore opportunities to gain political influence while networking with others looking to take responsibility and claim ownership of their government. The 4th Annual DemocracyFest is a 2-day festival traveling from state to state, and it is coming to New Hampshire (Manchester area) on June 9-10 at the Wayfarer Inn. This year, DemocracyFest™ seeks to engage residents throughout New England and from across the country, under the theme of “Potluck Politics: The Art of Participatory Democracy.”

New Hampshire was selected as the host with regard to the state’s prominence in the Democratic presidential primary. This placement helped DemocracyFest organizers and New Hampshire Representative Marcia Moody attract Presidential candidates to speak at DemocracyFest™. Both Senator John Edwards and Senator Mike Gravel will speak at the event. In addition, former Presidential candidate and current Democratic National Committee Chair, Howard Dean, will be the keynote speaker. Governor Dean’s speech, at 7:30 PM on Sunday evening, is free and open to the public.

“Each day begins with speakers, fellowship, dialog, and training. Each day ends with entertainment, and more time to build and start relationships with people near and far,” says Quintus Jett, a New Hampshire resident and Board Member for DemocracyFest Incorporated. Participants can select activities from an extensive program that include newly released progressive films, inspirational speakers; workshops and panels; advanced activist training; and networking with grassroots activists.

A sample of the other confirmed speakers include Secretary of State William Gardner; Representative Carol Shea-Porter, William McNary, President of USAction; Bev Harris, Founder and Director of Black Box Voting; and Mark Crispin Miller, author of Fooled Again, How the Right Stole the 2004 Elections.

Speakers and entertainers are still being added to the schedule. To date, singers include Cecilia St. King and Subway Serenade from NYC and regional favorites, Zo Tobi and Rebecca Padula. Three newly released films are being screened: We’re Counting the Votes and You Can Too, Hacking Democracy, and My War, My Story.

All this and more can be found at the historic Wayfarer Inn, located off route 101 and the 293 highway. Each DemocracyFest™ is produced and organized by DemocracyFest Incorporated (DFI). The presenting local host of the 4th Annual DemocracyFest is Democracy for New Hampshire. For tickets and more information, visit




Related: This was such an exciting event for me and my friends. It was our first foray into politics. Our neighbors,  Greg and Julie Gilman were going to host a house party for Democratic presidential hopeful former Sen. John Edwards. He was going to stop by their High Street home on Saturday afternoon. It was a memorable event to say the least. As it turned out scandal eventually caught up with John Edwards, but at the time he was right up there with Hilary Clinton and Sen. Barack Obama. Edwards had made eight visits to the NH since December and this visit was his ninth with two days of intense “grassroots” campaigning. On Saturday morning, Edwards spoke at the DemocracyFest event. My friend and I felt thrilled to be part of a gathering of national progressive organizations and activists.

More than a decade later, it's funny what you remember of past events. Aside from seeing John Edwards up close I remember having a heated discussion with my friend Petey about which online store had the best selection of North Face jacket styles. As our graduation present from high school our parents were taking us to South America for a ski trip. How cool was that! We were going to the Valle Nevado Ski Resort which is located in the heart of the Andes. It is the largest winter resort in the southern hemisphere. Valle Nevado offers guided backcountry tours and heli-skiing which we really wanted to do. So there the two of us were at DemocracyFest discussing skiing, where to buy a North Face jacket for our upcoming snowboarding adventure, while history was happening all around us. Crazy!.

Jump ahead now to 2019. Petey and I took our annual trip to Chile. This time it was to the Nevados de Chillán resort area, located 5 hours south of Santiago. With epic views, natural lava-tube halfpipes, buffed out wind lips, and splitboard touring options for days, what can I say except...awesome. On the other hand, what's happening back in the US is anything but awesome. With Trump in the White House and the GOP enabling him to totally destroy our government's institutions as we have known them, the political scene is depressing in many regards. However, I am heartened by the results of the 2018 elections and heading into the 2020 elections with impeachment dominating the news, I think the progressives within the Democratic Party are finally coming into their own. I was a Bernie supporter in 2016, but I now support Elizabeth Warren and am spending time campaigning for her. The 2007 DemocracyFest was a pivotal point in my life and opened my eyes to what can happen if you want to make a difference via political activism.




Easy Access, Great Location, Great Rates!

Submitted by DemFestAdmin on 27 April, 2007 - 1:16am.

Historic Wayfarer Inn

The Wayfarer Inn is located 4 1/2 miles from the Manchester Regional Airport, and a short drive from Boston's Logan International Airport. Driving Directions

A complimentary shuttle is available for travelers arriving at the Manchester Regional Airport. When you arrive at the airport, just call the Wayfarer Inn at 603-622-3766 and they will come pick you up.

Amenities include a health club, indoor and outdoor pools, sauna, lounge and wireless internet access.

Area attractions include an Ancient Monolithic Calendar (like Stonehenge) in nearby Salem, NH; the Historic Canterbury Shaker Village; Christa McAuliffe Planetarium; The Currier Gallery of Art; Stonyfield Farm Yogurt Factory; the Mall of New Hampshire; Robert Frost Birthplace; and Verizon Wireless Arena,and more!