This past weekend, Rockfest Concerts launched their inaugural Rockfest 80’s festival at Markham Park. With Miami/Dade county having Ultra Music fest, and West Palm with Sunfest, it seemed a perfect fit for Broward County to get another festival. Since the Langerado Festival parted ways many years ago, there was a void to fill, and Rockfest 80’s will hopefully do that for years to come. The event kicked off with a press conference last Thursday night at the Bonaventure Resort with an acoustic performance by Kip Winger of the band Winger. Markham Park in west Sunrise, was the right choice for a festival in my opinion. Plenty of parking, wide-open spaces and plenty of shaded areas to keep out of the sun.
The festival had a strong lineup. All the bands put on great sets and played all of their recognizable hits. The music was loud, and the audience ate up every rocking second of it. If you grew up in the 80’s then these bands definitely made up the soundtrack to your life back then. It was a strong lineup for an inaugural festival.
Festivals are a massive undertaking that require a lot of people doing a lot of things, so I have to give a big round of applause to Melissa and her staff at MAD PR for doing a great job at their first big rodeo in the festival arena. Rockfest 80’s had everything you would need to spend a day in the sun, listening to great music. There was a decent size vendor village, and plenty of places to get your drink on and grab a bite to eat.
The music rotated between two stages, east and west and the 15 minutes between acts gave the audience plenty of time to grab a beer or a bite. All in all, the festival flowed well, no major issues, except one, I was expecting more people. I’m not sure what the actual numbers were, or what the expectations were, but I felt, as did most of the media, that it should have been a bigger crowd.
Some folks in attendance thought that the ticket prices were a bit too high, for an inaugural festival. Now, they have another year to fix and tweak what they need to in order to get the numbers up and make it a viable, annual, and, a profitable festival. The potential for success is there. It definitely has a chance of having a long run, and we hope it does. Broward County needs a long running music festival, something to look forward to, so we don’t have to drive to Miami, or West Palm Beach, or out of state.
Rockfest 80’s is already scheduled to return next April, and from what we were told, the promoter is also looking to launch other festivals with 70’s and 90’s musicians & acts in the future. I am looking forward to seeing and hearing what comes next from these 2 companies, and covering next years festival. All in all, I had a great time and so did the audience, they sang and danced to all the songs they knew, the weather held out, and it was a great weekend of music.
Always support live music