Photo: The Accidentals, of Traverse City
The seventh annual Pumpstock Festival will take place Saturday, June 4th from 2:00pm – 8:00 pm at East Lansing’s Bailey Park. Pumpstock is an annual outdoor concert event that lets area residents hear nationally recognized musical acts in a fun, family-friendly setting.
The cost is a $10 suggested donation per adult, and kids attend free. All donations go to the artists.
Pumpstock started when Bailey residents Dudley and Geraldine Smith decided they wanted to start a concert series, and searched for local and regional acts to fill the intimate venue of East Lansing’s Orchard Street Pumphouse. Over the years, the venue attracted more and more people; to accommodate them, the Smiths created an outdoor summer festival and in 2010, Pumpstock was born.
Pumpstock these days is about six hours long, and centered on the East Lansing community. During my interview with Dudley Smith (better known as “Smitty”), I asked him why he felt the push to make it such a community-centered event.
“It seemed like the thing to do…musicians come from around the country to benefit the neighborhood, and extend that benefit to local food vendors and shop vendors.”
Pumpstock has also evolved some over the years due to its increasing amount of attendance. According to Smith, “Pumpstock started with about 60-100 people…and as of last year was around 350 people - double the attendance.” There have been a number of additions to the festival over the years to accommodate increasing attendance, including more children’s activities, the addition of a local band opener around 2pm and some local merchants like Michigan Shirt Works.
Asked about the music itself, Smith said that “folk is the best way to describe the genre, but it’s very non-traditional. A lot of people would call it Americana.”
Opening the Festival will be East Lansing’s own Cindy McElroy and Friends at 2:00pm, followed by progressive Speakeasy music from The Appleseed Collective at 3:00pm, award winning Americana music from The Mark Croft Trio at 4:15pm, American Jazz and Soul music from The Brad Cole Trio at 5:30pm, and The Accidentals from Traverse City with some “genre bending brilliance” to finish off the night at 6:45pm.
There will also be a second stage featuring East Lansing Musicians including, Monte Pride, Eric Smith (Detroit Music Award winner), East of Every (Kendall Cassella), and Alex Mendenall.
Pumpstock welcomes families with face painting by Annie Belle the clown, a playground, and children’s art activities. Local food vendors will be selling hot dogs, pizza, and other assortments of food for the entire family. East Lansing’s Velvet will be serving delicious ice cream and other confections.
So how does Smith sum up Pumpstock?
“Six hours, great music, people appreciating music, community, good food, and art.”
Bailey Park is located at 300 Bailey Street, in East Lansing. There will be free parking in Bailey subdivision and in the Bailey Community Center lot.