Riverfest moves eastward | Rock Candy

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Riverfest moves eastward

Posted By on Thu, Feb 19, 2009 at 4:36 PM

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Now imagine 100,000 people.

After drawing a record-breaking 252,000 in 2008, Riverfest is making sure that folks have room to breathe this year. The festival is shifting it's boundaries eastward on the Little Rock side. The Budweiser stage, positioned, at least for last several years, on the thin strip of lawn on North Shore park in North Little Rock, will move to the Clinton Presidential Center grounds. And the Triple-S stage, long located on a parking lot at the western most edge of Riverfront Park, will replace the Budweiser Stage in North Little Rock. The teen activities will move across the river, too.

Executive Director DeAnna Korte says the new arrangement will give festival goers more room to spread out, something organizers were mindful of after the bottleneck that ZZ Top and LL Cool J created in recent years in NLR.

The Budweiser Stage will face the library. Shannon says the positioning is, in part, a "safety issue" — to ward off potential gawkers driving over the I-30 bridge.

So far, four acts have been confirmed, and Korte says she expects to confirm several big names early next week.

Here's a quick rundown:

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Who cares? Anyone who can't get "Love Shack" out of her head and doesn't mind. Jazzercisers. Geeks like me who'll go fingers-crossed hoping to hear "Planet Claire" and "Dance the Mess Around."

Peak of fame? 1989-1990. That's when "Cosmic Thing," the album that spawned singles "Love Shack" and "Roam," came out and sold in bunches.

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Jason Aldean

Who cares? Fans of a slightly grittier version of Nashville. Anyone who self-identifies with a song called "Hicktown."

Peak of fame? Recently. Now, maybe. The Georgia native has two albums under his belt, one platinum and one gold, and he's releasing a third in April. 

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3 Doors Down

Who cares? So many more people than you'd think. Southern alt-rock never dies. Also, the National Guard.

Peak of fame? 2000-2001. On the strength of the single "Kryptonite," the band's sophomore album, "The Better Life" has sold 11 million records. Amazingly, last year's eponymous release reached the top of the charts and has been certified platinum.

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Trout Fishing in America

Who cares? Kids. Fans of Stan Freberg, Dr. Demento. Residents of Prairie Grove.

Peak of fame? Statically pretty popular for a long time. They got Grammy nominations in 2001, 2004, 2006 and 2008.

Is it possible to have Riverfest without Trout Fishing in America? No.

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