By Jacob Mathias
A Stevens Point man is bringing the Central Wisconsin music scene to the forefront by starting new local music festival, Jam’n’July, on July 25.
“I just thought, you know, why isn’t there some kind of an event held to celebrate music that’s made in our area,” said Jam’n’July founder Ben Kollock.
Jam’n’July will showcase 13 musical acts, the majority based in Central Wisconsin, from noon to 10 PM at the Pfiffner Park band shell.
Kollock grew up listening to bands perform at the now-defunct downtown Mission Coffee House and After Dark; both once-staples of the local music scene.
“Since those are gone, there’s not really a hot spot to have local music showcased,” he said.
Kollock is a self-taught drummer and member of the Stevens Point-based Wrath of the Girth, a self-described “Wisconsin beer metal band”. He said he’s been playing in bands since he was 13 years old and was inspired by growing up watching local bands.
He said his original plan was to have three or four bands perform at the band shell, but word of the small gathering spread and it turned into a larger affair.
Each band will be allotted 30 minutes, with two local deejays filling the gaps in between performances.
“People should attend this show. It’s popular to go to big festivals like Summerfest and catch your favorite acts of yesterday, but for all anyone knows the next Green Day is playing Pfiffner Park on the 25th,” said Tanner Hoffmann, bassist for the Rosa Parkinsons, a Point-based punk band.
There is no fee to attend but Kollock said he’s asking for a $5 donation to help fund next year’s event and recoup his personal financial investments into the festival.
2015 Jam’n’July Performance Schedule
12:15 PM to 12:45 PM: Sullen Riot
1:00 PM to 1:30 PM: Michael Strike and the God Damn Band
1:45 PM to 2:15 PM: Wrath of the Girth
2:30 PM to 3:00 PM: Spare Change
3:15 PM to 3:45 PM: Constance
4:00 PM to 4:30 PM: Buried as Kings
4:45 PM to 5:15 PM: Rosa Parkinsons
5:30 PM to 6:00 PM: Average American Fear
6:15 PM to 6:45 PM: Beyond Atlas
7:00 PM to 7:30 PM: Searchlights
7:45 PM to 8:15 PM: Rig Time
8:30 PM to 9:00 PM: All Out Mutiny
9:15 PM to 10:00 PM: Through The Years
“There’s a lot of rock, there’s a lot of punk…metal will be there for sure. Hardcore will be there for sure,” said Kollock. “I wouldn’t want the titles of the genres to scare some people away. There’s people I know that are going to be bringing their kids.”
Alcohol will not be available at the event but can be brought into the park by those over 21 years old. Guests are also encouraged to bring lawn games.
Pfiffner Park is located at 1100 Crosby Ave. in Stevens Point.
Jam’n’July’s Facebook page can be found here.