by Paul Robinson
This year’s Rocktoberfest, presented by Awendaw Green, will be one to remember: it’s the first one that won’t be held at Awendaw Green. The pre-festival Barn Jam on Wednesday October 7 at 7pm was once a gathering of 30 to 40 people sitting around a camp fire. Today, it has transformed into 300 to 400 people enjoying bands such as Hannah Miller, Harrison Ray’s Ghost Machine and Elonzo.
Awendaw Green’s exec Eddie White sees the festival as a dream come true. “This festival is successful and we want it to continue to be. Whatever hoops Charleston County wants us to jump through we will do it and with more smiles than anyone,” says White. Just before this year’s festival kickoff date, a visit from the Charleston County Zoning Committee was all but positive reinforcement of the festival. “The festival was originally zoned for Charleston and we are a RR1 (residential) zone, but the festival rides the line on commercial size and conflicts with zoning rules, so we moved the festival two doors down to the Sewee Outpost. We owe them a huge thank you for allowing us to move the festival to Awendaw County and out of Charleston County for the time being,” explained White.
Avoiding the conflict with Charleston County on zoning, Eddie White visualizes the bigger picture of the festival’s intentions. Rocktoberfest benefits the Charleston County Band Instrument Fund which will help set up local middle school and high school bands with the means to be successful. It will provide instruments to struggling local programs, put instruments in to the hands of future musicians and bring music from a place of darkness to light.
The festival begins October 9 and flows through October 12. Gaslight Street, Larry Keel & Natural Bridge, Cravin’ Melon, Jupiter’s Garden, The Plainfield Project, Milhouse, Quasiphonics and many more will make this year’s festival the best to come.
Tickets are just $40 for the full weekend ($25 with a valid student ID). Day passes are $15 ($10 for students). Free admission with the donation of a new or used instrument. Kids under 12 are free. Only 1,000 tickets are available so purchase them early at Etix.com. Bring a chair! Visit www.awendawgreen.com for line-ups, ticket sales, times and general information about this years festivus.