Saturday, June 5, 2010

new festivals this summer

Milwaukee, known for its variety of festivals, has a couple of new ones this year.  The first I'd like to mention is not really new, but is making a comeback, namely, the African World Festival.  This annual lakefront festival began in 1982, but has been defunct for the past two years because of financial instability and debt.  2010 marks its revival, and I hope it is here to stay.  I love the ethnic festivals because, besides the benefits of all Milwaukee festivals, like meeting up with friends and generally having a good time, one gets to taste a particular culture's food, and hear its music, and explore its art.  It's very enriching to take a few hours and celebrate one of the subcultures of the great culture we call Milwaukee.  So I look forward to attending African World Festival.  It will be a one day festival this year, on the 1st of August, at the Summerfest grounds, and will hopefully grow from there.

The next festival worthy of mention is a truly new one on the scene.  The Verge Music Festival fills the need for a festival dedicated to alternative and modern rock.  It goes from the 4th to the 5th of June, ie., this weekend.  So get there if you can, and check it out.  I hope it does well, but to be frank about my own opinion on this festival, I must say that while relegating alternative rock to its own festival may in one sense seem like an honor, I actually see it differently.  Namely, I wonder why we don't expand Summerfest itself a few days.  Summerfest, which is, by the way, the world's largest music festival, runs for eleven days (this year from 24 June-4 July), has always had a variety of musical styles.  It could be expanded to, say, a full fortnight, with the added alternative rock groups.  Then the alternative rock bands would be included with the rest.  That's my idea.  But I don't make those decisions. 

My goal will be to get to as many of the festivals as I can this year, though I'm sure that I will have to pick and choose to some extent.  I imagine I'll blog about some of the festivals this summer, as I experience them.  And I hope to see you there.

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