Rocktown Beer & Music Festival (In Pictures)

Aaron H. Johnston -- April 25th, 2011

The First Annual Rocktown Beer & Music Festival took place Saturday afternoon at the Turner Pavilion and Park in downtown Harrisonburg. The festival — sponsored by Harrisonburg’s Downtown Dining Alliance, with proceeds benefiting Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance — showcased the growing popularity of craft beers with over 30 breweries from around the country including Dogfish Head, Stone Brewing Co., Terrapin Beer Co. and Brooklyn Brewery, to name a few, along with several local favorites Cally’s, Devil’s Backbone, Blue Mountain and Starr Hill.

3,000 festival goers sampled beer and saw musical performances by Snarky Puppy, Larry Keel and Natural Bridge, Hackensaw Boys, and Yarn. Nearly 150 volunteers, many from local downtown restaurants, pitched in to help run the event.


Photos and text by Aaron H. Johnston

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9 Responses to “Rocktown Beer & Music Festival (In Pictures)”

  1. Holly says:

    Incredible photos! What a great event for the ‘Burg.

    • Bazrik says:

      Ugh. I was out of town for this, and it’s killin’ me to see these shots! :)

      Great photos, and agreed, Holly – what a great event, I wish I could have been there.

      …I missed Mr. Keel, I can’t believe it!!

  2. Jeremiah says:

    Thanks to Aaron Johnston for these great photos. Saturday was such a great day! So many people from our community stepped in to help make this event a success. Well done, Harrisonburg. Well done.

  3. Aaron Ludwig says:

    Thanks to all 3,000 folks who made this a huge hit for Harrisonburg. So many different segments of our community teamed up to make this a reality.
    The music, the brewers with their craft beers and most importantly the people made this one of Harrisonburg’s best. CHEERS TO YOU!! -Aaron L.

  4. blondiesez says:

    I wish I could have been there — looks like it was a grand shindig!

    I can’t help but note from an editorial perspective — the term “First Annual” is, by its very definition, an oxymoron. It can’t be an annual ANYTHING until the second one has been scheduled and/or taken place, event planners’ intents be damned.

    Now, had they said the INAUGURAL Beer and Music Festival . . . .

    Sorry, that’s just one of my biggest pet peeves, linguistically speaking.

  5. Beth says:

    Awesome photos! They definitely capture the spirit of the festival.
    I was impressed with how many people came from out of town. Harrisonburg as a destination?! It was a truly wonderful way to welcome spring and I look forward to next year’s event.

  6. Jeremiah Jenkins says:


    you may be a cunning linguist, but i’m a master debater. “first annual” is not an oxymoron. it is the first annual because the organizers already know that this festival will happen every year. it was organized and planned as an annual event, which the beer vendors, city officials, farmer’s market, ABC, volunteers, sound company, bands, etc. all understood from the beginning, and it is the first one, so therefore it is the first annual.

    on a marketing side, it communicates to everyone that this will be an annual event and this is the first one. sorry if it peeves you, but everyone else understands the intentions of the message, even if we all must submit to what the fates allow.

    i hope you have a great time relaxing at the 2nd Annual Rocktown Beer and Music Festival.

  7. Charlie says:

    I like Beer

  8. David Miller says:

    off topic, if you hadn’t heard, there is another community meeting tonight at 6pm for input into the proposed Amphitheater in Downtown Harrisonburg. I went last night, it was a good approach to gathering input. Cheers to the Fairfield Center for creating good dialogue.

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