he lineup has been set for weeks, and all that remains is for the Jammers and bands to show up for the 19th annual Moondance Jam held Thursday through Saturday.
Bill Bieloh, the godfather of Minnesota’s biggest and best outdoor classic rock festival, said general admission tickets and three- and four-day general camping will be available at the gate, but everything else is sold out.
Gates open at 10 a.m. Wednesday for early camping and the Pre Jam Party. Anyone who wants to set up camp a day early and avoid the longer lines Thursday can upgrade their camping at the gate for $20 per person.
Wednesday night will also feature a free Pre Jam Party in Saloon for ticket-holders that will be capped off with an ‘80s rock tribute, Hairball, headlining on the main stage.
“There is definitely a buzz this year. That first day is really going to set the tone,” said Bieloh.
This year the roster of artists is as impressive as in previous years, with Sammy Hagar, REO Speedwagon and Lynyrd Skynyrd set to close Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, respectively. Other performers include Buckcherry, Collective Soul, Pat Benatar, Don Felder, Jonny Lang, Cinderella, Hoobastank, The Smithereens and Black Stone Cherry.
After seeing a 15 percent increase in attendance at their country music festival in June, along with an increase in Moondance Jam pre-event ticket sales, Bieloh expects a huge turnout for the rock festival.
“Our phones have been ringing off the hook for the last month,” he said.
Every year there is something new at Moondance. This year’s biggest additions are the new Tiki Bar, the Moondance Shuffle “pub crawl,” the Moondance Shuffle Drawing and the karaoke contest. The Tiki Bar, located just outside of Lazy Moon Backstage bar, serves great “island” drinks. The Moondance Shuffle laminates and cards are available at token booths. Drawings will be held nightly at 8:30 p.m. from the main stage for sponsor packs, meet and greets, 2011 tickets and more.
In addition to the 9 a.m. Bloody Mary bar and breakfast buffet, the Lazy Moon Backstage Bar now has a karaoke contest starting at 11 a.m. and running until 2 p.m. Winners will win tickets and camping for Moondance Jam 20.