Music festival rocks

Intermittent rain didn’t keep people away from the eighth annual Rock the Leaves Music Festival in the Scandinavian Heritage Park on Saturday.

“We do have a big tent,” said Anthony Ramos, president of the Greater Minot Youth Concert Association, gesturing towards the tent where groups were performing. “We’re fighting it!”

On Friday, the opening day of the festival, there were about 400 attendees, said Ramos. Ramos estimated that about 500 people attended the event on Saturday, even though rain may have kept some people at home.

Some of the performers were local, while others were well known performers from out of state. The songsters range from country music performers to gospel and contemporary music singers.

“It is a positive, family friendly, faith-based event,” said Ramos. “And it’s something to do in Minot.”

Ramos said 30 bands will have performed when the three-day event ends today.

All of the organizers of the concert are volunteers, and preparing for each year’s concert requires a lot of time. Ramos said the organization receives assistance from churches in the community and local business professionals.

Some of the proceeds from the concert go to different charities. This year, a portion of the proceeds will go to Welcome Table, a group trying to build a homeless shelter in Minot, and to the national charity Feed My Starving Children.

Different vendors are set up at the park as well during the festival.

When the event got its start eight years ago, the concert asked only for free-will donations. Ramos said the organization started charging admission a few years ago as the concert became more widely known and received more exposure. However, he pointed out that the festival is still a great value. A free steak feed was included in the price of admission to the festival on Saturday.

Admission to today’s events at the Rock the Leaves is $5 for people over age 10, if they haven’t purchased tickets to one of the previous days.

Performers this afternoon at the Scandinavian Heritage Park include Alex Baker at noon; Exit Atlantic at 12:30 p.m.; Generosity Encouraged at 1 p.m.; Toppler Dixon at 1:30 p.m.; Tigirlily at 2 p.m.; and ElevenAM at 3 p.m.