Annapalooza!

| August 30, 2010 | 1 Comment

Yes, after a summer of some travel and a little R&R, the Bar Bitch has returned. But before I head back behind the rail, I took a detour to Annapalooza!

This past Saturday nearly 4000 Annapolitans donned their sunscreen and dancing feet and headed over to the Anne Arundel County Fairgrounds for the first annual Annapalooza Music and Arts Festival. Given a slight reprieve from the ghastly temperatures we’ve had this summer, Saturday proved to be a beautiful day.

The fairground location was ideal; set up with three stages, a strip of fabulous vendors, great food and plenty of shade to hide out in if the sun got to be too hot. The Absolut Alley Stage, perched at the top of the grounds,  played host to some great local bands such as Higher Hands (a personal favorite), Sweet Leda, Dean Rosenthal and Pressing Strings–although acoustically was a bit of a nightmare. Many local area restaurants also called Absolut Alley their home for the day serving up some great mixed drinks. The Grapefruit Crushes from Sam’s on the Waterfront were not to be missed!

Stage 2, The Woodchuck Hard Cider Stage, sat next to Absolut Alley with the perfect mix of shade and acoustics (as well as being directly next to the “food court”). I spent most of my time here listening to some great bands like The Bridge, Grilled Lincolns and Mambo Sauce and during set breaks we were entertained by a BMX high jumper.

The Main stage allowed plenty of room to spread out with blankets and lawn chairs and enjoy the “Summer of Rock” winners; Synesthesia, High-brid and Have Gun Won’t Travel. Also featured on here were Afro Bop Alliance, The Cheaters, Bill Kirchen, Pietasters and headliners, Soja.

For a music and arts festival, I would have liked to have seen more “arts”. Besides the vendors, there was a definite lack of any substantial art. I spoke with a would-be vendor, and it seemed like the creators of Annapalooza made it very difficult for local artists to attain booth space–maybe something to consider for next year. Besides being an incredibly musically oriented town, Annapolis has such a wealth of amazing artists that I was hoping to see at the festival. I left a bit disappointed in that aspect. There was a huge focus on recycling, which I have to applaud, and I think they did an excellent job organizing and running the venue.

Laura Atkinson and Stephanie Wantland, festival volunteers, said they were excited to have such a great venue to showcase some of the local talent that Annapolis has to offer. They also stressed that there was some concern with the festival corresponding with the opening day of the Renaissance Festival, but were happy with the turnout they had received. “We’re all really looking forward to doing it again next year” Atkinson stated.

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Category: Entertainment, Events, LIFE IN THE AREA, OPINION

About the Author ()

I graduated with an Art degree from a small liberal arts college, did a bit of traveling and moved to Annapolis from Baltimore about seven years ago. I currently manage a well-known Annapolis restaurant, serve and bartend. I live downtown and I like sunsets and long walks on the beach :)