Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Summerfest: The 4th and Beyond

Continuing with Summerfest. Our first post clued you in on the "Gatecrasher" opportunities, those Festivals which occur within the month of June, and some of them within a week of the post. We took a slight detour with our second post, as we focused on one series of festivals in particular, The Rock The River/Rock The Lakes Minifestival put on by Franklin Graham and The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.  Just a further tidbit about these. They are free, non-ticketed events, though I am sure there is some Capacity rules at Coca Cola Park and Sahlens Stadium, since they are sporting arenas. The other two are literally in parks, so just walk in. Actually there shouldn't be a problem at the two stadiums. Most will be sitting on the field and then there are the bleachers.

We return to our coverage of the Festivals which are occurring throughout the Summer months. Of course these are all in the United States. There are a few International Festivals, however, and I shall cover them in another post.

Great Lakes Region

There's no better place to begin than with Farewell. Cornerstone Festival (C-Stone to music fans) is calling it quits this year. They started way back in 1984, so its kind of bumming that they at least didn't wait until next year, when they could have gone out on the 30th Anniversary. It's more of a bummer that it's ending, because they were one of the few, if not the only festival, to actively recruit the fringe, techno, hard rock, industrial Christian Bands. I hope the other festivals will pick up the slack on that front, but I am not that optimistic on that front. The festival goes from July 2-7. It's best to go to the site for this one as things are still in flux.

There are two other Festivals for those wishing to go to the Great Lakes region this summer. Lifefest is in Oshkosh, WI from July 11-15 and Unity Christian Music Fest is in Muskegon, MI from August 8-11.

Midwest Region

Moving west, there are a number of big festivals in the Midwest and plains. The biggest here is Sonshine Festival from July 11 -14 in Wilmar, Minnesota, West of Minneapolis. They have an HM Stage, which should have a lot of the C-Stone favorites.

After Sonshine, another big festival here is Lifelight on Labor Day Weekend just outside Sioux Falls, SD. One major selling point. It's free. Skillet will be here along with other top bands.

There is one festival in the southern Midwest, and it's Rock The Desert in Midland, TX from August 2-4.  Texans should check this out. They say Tickets are only $25.

Northwest Region

Only one festival of note in this region, and that is Creation Northwest in Eunemclaw, WA outside of Tacoma. Pretty much the same bands that came to the eastern festival will be here as well, so I won't say much. They are celebrating their fifteenth anniversary this year.

Southwest Region

This region has seem some major Festival Contractions. Spirit West Coast in Del Mar has occurred already back around Memorial Day. The Monterey festival was cancelled this year. There are two California festivals still to come, but they test the limits of Summer. Joshua Fest is in Plymouth, California, which is in the vicinity of Sacramento. It takes place from August 31- September 2. The Rock of Ages fest will occur in October, but I will deal with that later.

Northeast Region

Most of the major festivals in the Southeast and Middle Atlantic region occurred in May or June, so we move on to the Northeast region, where the Summer really rocks. The two major festivals in the region finally got their scheduling act together, allowing you to have eight days to rock. New England is celebrating the 15th Anniversary of Soulfest at Gunstock Mountain in Gilford, NH near Laconia from August 1-4. This festival has grown every year since it began in 1998 at Loon Mountain. I think it is arguably the premiere festival in the Northeastern United States now, even though it still trails Kingdom Bound (August 5-8 Darien Lakes, NY outside Buffalo) which is celebrating its 25th Year. If you can't decide, and you've got money to burn, go to both.

That pretty much covers the major festivals this summer, at least in the United States. There are a few upcoming International Festivals for the jet set crowd. I will cover those in a later post. Click on the links for ticket information. Until next time I am Awaiting Your Reply.