Mix of music and fun

There will be something for everyone at the “Why Not?! Music and Arts Festival,” or the Why Not Fest for short, this weekend, Friday through Sunday, presented by the Pangea House.

Performers and spectators alike will have the opportunity to experience the independent music and arts scene that Minot has to offer.

The festival consists of three days of music and art, featuring 100 bands, a local poster exhibit and a variety of other activities. Venues in the festival include Otis & James Photography, Souris River Brewing, Sweet ‘N Flour Patisserie, Mouse River Players, the Taube Museum of Art and Oak Park. Each day the festival will be held at a different venue, with music and activities starting at 5 p.m. on Friday and noon on Saturday and Sunday. Cost is $15 for the weekend or $7 per day.

There’s a pre-party happening Thursday at Souris River Brewery at 8 p.m. On Friday, festivities start at the Taube Museum of Art with registration and musical acts. There are also musical acts at Sweet ‘N Flour Patisserie starting at 7 p.m. as well as at Mouse River Players downtown starting at 6 p.m. On Saturday, more music will be offered at the Taube Museum of Art, Otis & James Photography and Souris River Brewing. For Sunday, events will take place at the Taube Museum of Art and Oak Park. A full schedule of events is available at www.pangeahouse.org.

Jazmine Wolff, event coordinator for Why Not Fest, said local musicians play for free and the traveling bands are paid $50. The event appeals to a wide variety of ages, too, she added, as there is something for everyone and music of all different kinds.

Why Not Fest started four years ago, Wolff said, as a music festival to remember a friend who had passed away and a celebration of what Pangea House had done all year with booking bands to play. The festival got its name when the Pangea House threw a huge festival, she continued, and asked, “Why not?” There was no reason, Wolff said, so they did. “It’s an empowering name because Minot was a smaller community at the time and it seemed kind of ridiculous to throw a music event.”

There are several new events at this year’s Why Not Fest. One of the events is the fashion show involving food by Minot Fashion Week, a non-profit organization and creative outlet for artists and designers who want to showcase their creations while raising money for local non-profit organizations. “We have some new venues this year like Sweet ‘N Flour and Souris River Brewery,” Wolff said. “Music will be provided outside, too, so that will be a new feature, if the weather cooperates,” she added.

People are usually surprised by the caliber of music in town, Wolff said. “They can’t believe the talent of local bands,” she added. People are also made aware of live music shows through the Why Not Fest as well, Wolff said. A wide variety of music can be expected at this weekend’s festival. “This is one to be excited about,” Wolff said. “You name it, we’ve got it. You can expect fun. Lots of people will be setting up craft items, too, and there’s also an independent publisher from Portland coming and a vegan chef also coming from Portland,” she said.