Tuesday June 5, 2007
Fifth Third Bank Waterfront Independence Fest
offers two days of fun for families
Free concerts by Josh Turner, The Neville Brothers, and Billy Currington
Mayor Jerry Abramson and Fifth Third Bank President Phil McHugh today announced plans for the annual Fifth Third Bank Waterfront Independence Festival at Waterfront Park. The two day festival will feature free concerts on the Great Lawn by major recording artists Josh Turner, The Neville Brothers and Billy Currington. The festival also offers free family entertainment and fireworks over the Ohio River on both July 3rd and 4th.
2007 marks Fifth Third Bank’s fourth year of title sponsorship for this event, and McHugh is pleased with the community’s response. "Fifth Third Bank is happy to provide the community with a family-friendly way to celebrate the holiday,” said McHugh. “Public response has been phenomenal – people are amazed that artists of this caliber are featured at a free event, and we are proud to be able to make that happen.” The Fifth Third Waterfront Independence Festival averages an attendance of 150,000 over the two day event.
“Waterfront Park is the place to be for the July Fourth holiday,” said Mayor Abramson. “Thanks to sponsors like Fifth Third, the festival just gets bigger and better every year.”
Tuesday, July 3rd, is WAMZ Country Night, featuring free concerts by double-platinum artist Josh Turner, up-and-coming country artist Billy Currington, and local favorite Johnny Berry. Turner, known for his “South Carolina Low Country” baritone style, followed his platinum-selling debut, “Long Black Train,” with the double-platinum sophomore effort, “Your Man.” Currington recently had a #1 hit from his platinum selling album, “Doin’ Somethin’ Right,” and is currently in the studio putting finishing touches on his third Mercury Nashville album, which is scheduled for release this fall. Also appearing will be Louisville’s own Johnny Berry, who returns this year for his second appearance at the Fifth Third Waterfront Independence Festival.
Close your eyes and think “Waterfront Bayou” for Radio One’s Louisiana inspired July 4th lineup – The Neville Brothers, the Cajun-country sound of Jo-El Sonnier, and Caribbean steel drum band Steel of the Night. Described as “50,000 watts of pure funk,” the Neville Brothers’ latest album, “Walkin’ in the Shadow,” is an autobiographical slice of life that deals with, among other things, growing up in one of the roughest neighborhoods in New Orleans and their relationships and strong connections as brothers. Sonnier, widely known as the “King of Cajun,” is a musician’s musician with fans as diverse as Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello, and Hank Williams, Jr. Steel of the Night will open the evening with “feel good” music, including island songs, a little rock & roll, and favorites from Buffett and Belefonté.
While all of Waterfront Park is accessible, this year a special viewing area will be provided at the concert for individuals in wheelchairs. This is an area that will be reserved and fenced off, and each person in a wheelchair is welcome to bring one escort.
Festival offers something for everyone
Family friendly activities include Radio Disney Live, free inflatable games, kids’ bands, and prizes, appearances by the Squallis Puppeteers. Vendors will sell festival food, including corndogs, barbecue, Italian sausage, and gyros. Vendors will also display and sell arts and crafts items.
Gates open each day at 5:00 p.m., with the opening of the Catfish Louie Kids Area and the Coors Light Beer Garden. July 3rd fireworks will begin at 10:30, following the Bats baseball game. July 4th fireworks will go off at 10:00 p.m.
A complete schedule, directions, band information, and a list of frequently asked questions can be found on the Festival website, www.WaterfrontIndependenceFestival.com.
What can I bring?
Blankets, and lawn chairs are allowed. Water is allowed in small plastic bottles AS LONG AS THEY HAVE NOT BEEN OPENED - the seal must be unbroken.
Prohibited items: Tents, glass, coolers, cans, bottles, pets, skateboards, weapons, and bicycles inside the event space (bike racks are available near event entrances),
Additional event information
Individuals interested selling arts, crafts or related merchandise will find a vendor application and guidelines at www.WaterfrontIndependenceFestival.com. All food vendor spots have been filled.
Restore 64 WILL NOT be in operation during the two days of the event. Access to the area will be available by way of I-64, I-65, and all surface streets.
All activities are made possible by generous community support from the following sponsors:
Fifth Third Bank
Louisville Metro Government
Radio One Louisville
Waterfront Development Corporation
AT&T Real Yellow Pages®
Better Quality Business Systems
LEO, Louisville Eccentric Observer
Friends of the Waterfront
Nugent Sand Company
Tom Stinnett RV