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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

The Importance of Muskegon's Rockstock - Andy O Editorial

Muskegon has seen it's fair share of good times and bad.  We've also seen some things come and some things go as we've discussed here a multitude of times.  Ya, I am probably waving the flag again, but I happen to LOVE this community.  I love it for who we are, what we can do and through the good and the bad, we're still standing.  Muskegon is a lot of things, but one thing we are not....is a community of quitters.



I know that there is a LOT of pride in Muskegon.  A LOT of it.  I know too, that for the last bunch of years, it's seemed like we've had more taken away than we've gained.  But follow along here for a few and hopefully, you'll see where I am going with this. I am going to use Rockstock as an example.

Rockstock got underway 10 years ago with some bar bands playing in Hackley Park.  A chance for people under 21 to get out and see some cool live music, parents and kids to get together to enjoy some noise and you know...what can it hurt to have another event in the park any way.  As a whole though, Muskegon was still contracting a little.  Brandon Baskin had a small event, with low prices and local people willing to pitch in to get something going.  Family and friends all pitched in, they still do, bands played..things were learned and step by step the event grew.  No one was biting off more than they could chew, slow and steady wins the race.

This is the second year that Rockstock was held at Heritage Landing.  Not to diminish what Summer Celebration was or what Coast West tried, they were both incredibly awesome events, but Rockstock has taken the same simple approach,  Keep prices low.  Make it affordable for families, offer things for kids to do as well as adults and find enough diversity in the music to please just about any palate.  If you saw Let There Be Rock and Crazy Babies on Monday there was plenty for the loud crowd.  If you were there for Echoes of Pink Floyd, the more cultured music palate was taken care of with one of the most incredible tribute acts I have ever seen and I don't mean maybe.

Rockstock Fans Enjoying Echoes of Pink Floyd
Tickets to get in were only $5, beers were $3 and like always, people came in droves both nights to enjoy the scene....but there was more.  People came out to be together.  People come out to be part of that Muskegon togetherness.  In or out of the festival site, Shoreline Drive was filled with people all coming together for the celebration.  We have proven once again that nothing stops Muskegon.   We might get knocked down....but you can bet we're getting back up and dusting off and going at it again.  This is an awesome community, and if you have not noticed, those "knock downs" are becoming further and further a part.  We're seeing in ourselves just how much we can do...it just takes being together.  It takes willingness to be patient...to grow...to try new things and adjust to make them fit.  We are seeing a better side of all of ourselves and in return...we're being seen differently through the eyes of the rest of the area.  Watch Us Go they keep saying... one by one....and in groups....we're giving them all something to watch and we're growing closer and closer as the truly great city we are.

Rockstock filled the most important need.  Be it music of fireworks...Rockstock brought us all together.  Muskegon is unstoppable as one.

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