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First Ouibache Music Festival Replaces Two Similar, Cancelled Events

Javier Morales / Flickr

A weekend music festival in Greater Lafayette aims to raise money for children hoping to learn music.

“We want to be able to raise enough money to give back to kids who want to learn more about music, but don’t have the resources to do so,” says Ouibache Music Festival organizer Scott Freeman.

Freeman says cuts to funding for art and music programs across the country are minimizing youth exposure to such subjects.

The Ouibache Music Festival, taking place at the Tippecanoe County Amphitheater, is a celebration of roots music -- a wide genre including bluegrass, gospel, jazz, and many other musical styles.

Nearly half of the performers on this year’s lineup are local musicians.

“We wanted to be able to showcase what [local performers] do for our community, musically, and to thank and honor them,” Freeman says.

Freeman says the idea for the festival came after last year’s cancellation of two local events, Dancing and Cruising in the Streets and the Uptown Jazz and Blues Festival.

Freeman says the costs to put on this year’s festival are being covered by private donations, though tickets will be sold to attendees for $5 in advance or $10 at the door.

This Saturday will feature musical performances from noon to midnight, as well as a variety of hand-picked artisans, swing dancing, and the Ouibache Festival Intergalactic Cornhole Tournament. Festivalgoers are welcome to day camp at the festival on Saturday, but overnight camping will be restricted to Prophetstown State Park.

Though the Ouibache Musical Festival is only making its debut this weekend, organizers already have plans for next year’s festival. Freeman says he hopes next year’s festival will be a two-day event, with camping at the festival site.

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