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Now THIS is a party!

LibertyFest puts the free in freedom
By CHRIS CONTI  |  July 2, 2014


The 15th annual LibertyFest bash has outgrown its Smith Hill roots and will relocate to Dusk (301 Harris Ave), and hot-damn, it’s a doozy. We’re talking 13 hours and more than 30 musical acts performing on two stages rain or shine — all free of charge! What? In this economy?

The event’s core group of organizers are the folks to thank — Dave Rocha, Devon Nickerson, Travis Sherman, and Chandler Hearn — for corralling this badass lineup. “Everyone works tirelessly to come up with a solid mix that represents the varied styles and characters of this great city,” Rocha said when I checked in earlier this week. “It’s a bit of a painful process at times, but it also speaks to the wealth of talent and an eagerness to take part in the raddest party of the year.”

Rocha noted the majority of artists approached them to join the LibertyFest roster and perform (free of charge), which only fortifies the event’s DIY spirit. “LibertyFest attracts a multitude of acts because it’s a neighborhood party at a city-wide scale,” he said. “We all get together to celebrate freedom, community, and rock and roll.”

The LibertyFest crew proposed the idea to Dusk co-owner Rick Sunderland, who was “immediately keen to the idea, which not only opened up a great deal of new options, but allowed us to keep it as close to the neighborhood as possible,” said Rocha. The location may have been upgraded but the free entry is here to stay, according to Rocha, who also said the organizing team is focused on keeping the event a family-friendly affair.

“This is still an all-ages event, and even in these last few days we are working hard at trying to ensure that there are activities for both the young, and the young at heart,” said Rocha. Local artists and various vendors will also be on hand. And while the long-running BYOB/potluck aspect has been waived this year, the Dusk barstaff will be slinging cold brews and cocktails all day and night (inside and outside), and mobile eats will be available courtesy of Poco Loco Taco, Dad’s Dugout, and Julian’s. The trucks will be stationed along the alleyway leading to the spacious back lot, with a large loading dock platform serving as the second stage.

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