The 39th annual Riverfest celebration will take on a new, expanded format with “Springfest” offered free on Saturday, April 2, and the traditional Riverfest music experience, minus the family activities, presented Friday through Sunday, June 3-5.
Springfest will fill Riverfront Park with many of the most popular daytime activities Riverfest traditionally has offered, including International Village; the Super Retriever Series dog jumping competitions; the Jesse White Tumblers and other roving attractions; Ruff on the River, the Rock ’n’ Stroll 5k Fun Run as well as children’s arts and crafts activities. A concert by acclaimed musical duo Trout Fishing in America will close Springfest.
Flowing on the River, the festival’s separately ticketed wine and craft beer event, will kick off Riverfest 2016 on Friday, June 3. As in years past, concerts by top-name musical acts, along with local and regional performers, will be presented on stages in Riverfront Park and the grounds of the Clinton Presidential Center on Saturday and Sunday, June 4-5. As always, Market Row vendors and popular Riverfest food and drink merchants will be featured during the weekend.
Ticket prices have not yet been set.
“The cost of booking quality musical acts has accelerated rapidly over the last many years, and Riverfest ticket prices have naturally reflected that trend,” said DeAnna Korte, Riverfest executive director. “We have worried that this has become a financial burden for families and others who aren’t as interested in the evening concerts, so this year we’re presenting many of the classic Riverfest activities for free. And those who want to see the headline concerts will still get that chance for a price that will be very competitive with if not significantly lower than the cost of attending other popular music festivals.”
Korte continued: “We know Riverfest serves two distinct audiences. After almost 40 years – an amazing run for any festival – it is time for a change to ensure all festival-goers’ needs. In 2016, Riverfest will move off Memorial Day weekend for the first time in the festival’s history. Korte said that decision was made “because that weekend traditionally is a time when families go to the lake or engage in other start-of-summer activities. We wanted to remove that barrier as a reason people might not be able to attend Riverfest.”
More specific details for both the April and June expanded Riverfest experiences will be announced as they develop.