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Looking forward to a different music fest

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news Detroit Lakes, 56501
Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

Growing up in a town like Detroit Lakes definitely has its interesting, but unusual privileges. So does having the editor of the local newspaper as your father.

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    If you live in Detroit Lakes you know the biggest event that goes on here is WE Fest, and because my dad works at the paper, I had the privilege of going to both WE Fest and the 10,000 Lakes Festival off and on since I was 10 years old.

Obviously, I went to see the music acts (such as the Doobie Brothers, and Ringo Starr) back when those kinds of acts were at WE Fest.

    But from personal experience, of the two festivals, I have to say I preferred the 10,000 Lakes Festival over WE Fest quite a bit. Not saying I don't enjoy watching thousands of incredibly drunk people trip over each other while Jason Aldean rocks a tune, I guess it's just a personal preference.

    For starters, I'm not much of a fan of country music. Yeah, I know. It's almost a sin to say that in Detroit Lakes, but I just am not.

On the other hand, the last year 10K ran, there were some really good acts (such as Atmosphere, Mason Jennings, Wilco, and The Dave Matthews Band) which range from hip hop to alternative rock -- genres of music that fit my personal taste almost perfectly.

    The second thing was it seems like hippies (the 10,000 Lakes Fest crowd, not meant to offend anyone) are just a bit more respectful than drunken cowboys.

Not saying I support the idea of guys running around tripping out to live music, but the level of violence seemed to be much lower. Also the majority seemed to respect the fact they were at an event, not their friends' house, and cleaned up after themselves -- which is definitely not something I can say about the WE Fest crowd.

    The third thing I preferred about 10K was the number of people who attended it. There's no question WE Fest was a 10 times bigger event, but I prefer going to a place with a couple thousand people over one with 40,000 people.

WE Fest has gotten so popular you can hardly make it across the concert bowl, but 10K was quiet enough that you could actually enjoy the music, if that's what you were there to do.

    Anyway, in my opinion the last 10,000 Lakes Fest was by far the best one they had, and I was really looking forward to the one the next year.

But then I heard the news. 10K was officially no longer in existence. I was 15 at the time, and I was pretty bummed out. In fact, the idea of no 10K hasn't really seemed possible to me yet, I keep expecting one every year, but nothing's happened yet.

    What I'm getting at is from the point of view of myself, a Detroit Lakes resident, is that if we have to put up with WE Fest (not saying it's a lousy event) I just feel there should be another music festival to look forward to in the summer with a different genre of music for those whose musical taste don't flow to the country side.

I don't think the idea of a 10K or something similar would be a bad idea for DL, especially considering we have the Soo Pass Ranch, which only gets used one or twice a year.

Maybe the High Plains Fest, which seems pretty heavy on the bluegrass side, will grow to be as good as the 10,000 Lakes Fest. If it does, I'll be there.

Jonah Bowe is a junior at Detroit Lakes High School.

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