IDYLLWILD (CBSLA) — Residents of Idyllwild are hoping the rains stop long enough to allow people to attend a three-day weekend musical festival and fundraiser.
Concert organizers put the event together to help raise money for people who lost everything in the Cranston Fire. t’s called Idyllwild Strong.
CBS2’s Tina Patel reports that one main artery to get to Idyllwild — Highway 74 — was closed earlier Friday when rains brought mud and rocks and debris to the area.
At 5 p.m., she reported that the rain had stopped but a line of cars were waiting until the highway could reopen.
Earlier, rain was coming down in sheets. People listening to Ernesto Ale play in the Backroom, couldn’t help but notice what was happening outside.
“This is not what we need. We need rain, but we don’t need this because there’s nothing holding the ground together in the burned areas,” says Martha Lumia.
Firefighters just got the Cranston Fire contained last week and they are worried that heavy rain could bring the hillsides down.
“I know there’s going to be delays on the roads because of mudslides, I was caught in that yesterday for four or five hours,” says Ale.
He is one of five people who lost everything in the fire. But he says that the Idyllwild community has rallied around him and the other homeowners over the past few weeks.
That’s the reason they organized the music festival — to bring tourists back to town and raise money for those who have to rebuild. Ale is one of 70 musicians slated to play this weekend — all volunteers.
“It’s kind of business as usual in Idyllwild, it’s a tight community and people are really concerned about each other. It’s what I love about it,” Ale says.
That’s why everyone hopes the rain just stops.
“I’m disappointed because all the planning that’s gone in for this and people aren’t going to be able to get here.,” says Lumia. “We need people here to know that we’re here, we’re survivors.”
While Highway 74 is still closed between Mountain Center and Lake Hemet, those wishing to get to the festival can go through Banning.
Residents are hoping people will do just that. The festival continues through Sunday.
The Festival runs until 10 p.m. Friday, noon to 10 p.m. Saturday and from noon to 8 p.m. Sunday at various venues around Idyllwild.