The Return of Rockalooa; free concert festival set for Saturday

BY CALLY ANDERSON
PHOTOS COURTESY HARRISON HALE PHOTOGRAPHY

Music fans in the Hays area should mark their calendars as the Eighth Annual Rockalooa Music Festival returns to Hays on Saturday at Municipal park.

Organized and hosted by the Midway Music Corps Inc., this non-profit organization has significantly transformed this event over the years. Beginning as a musical showcase at indoor bars for the first five events, Rockalooa has since grown. In 2018, Rockalooa was able to host its festival at Municipal Park and increasingly continues to grow the event each year. 

With the first band hitting the stage at 1:00 pm, this year’s lineup will feature ten live bands, listed below. 

Four regionally touring groups:

  • The Fey (Lincoln, NE)
  • VEHICLES (Wichita, KS)
  • Stone The Thrones (Kearney, NE) 
  •  2Twenty2 (Kansas City)

Six local groups: 

  • Starslinger (Hays),
  • Tree Kitty (Hays), 
  • Miles On End (Hays) 
  • Flyover (Hays) 
  • 80 Proof Alice (Russell) 
  • Mid-Engine (Hays)

Matt Isley, the organizer of Rockalooa, believes having a variety of artists creates an environment for all attendees to enjoy the day. 

“We put a lot of effort into building an eclectic lineup of artists; a little bit of something for everyone. Rock, of course, but also Bluegrass, Ska, Pop, Hip-Hop, and so on,” Isley said. “Attendees can expect a great show from the bands and the professional stage and sound crew help put them in the best light; visually and sonically.”

Rockalooa is a unique experience exclusive to Hays, because festivals like this typically only exist in large metro areas. 

Not only will there be live musical performances, but attendees will also be able to watch art demonstrations, view and shop vendor booths, grab a bite to eat, play yard games, and do other activities.

Isley encourages people to come out and support the event, especially since it is free to the public. 

“I would encourage the community to come see the great music and art that exists in the area. We’re really grateful for the support we get throughout the year from community partners that allow us to make this a free event for all ages,” Isley said.

For those interested in volunteering for this event, coordinators are still actively looking, and more information can be found at rockhays.com/getinvolved.

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