Beginning June 9th, The Ann Arbor Summer Festival (A2SF) will host its 40th celebration featuring outdoor entertainment, live music performances, art exhibitions, kid’s activities, and film showings. The month-long event attracts an audience of over 80,000 people.
This year A2SF will feature over 130 events, including over 60 music performances, 30+ kid-friendly specific programs, and eight movie showings.
Mike Michelon, A2SF’s Executive Director, called the event a welcoming experience that highlights the talent of the Ann Arbor community.
“I’m just happy to be out there,” Michelon said. “Slowly returning and producing live events is challenging and costly. I’m thrilled to be out there and have an incredible lineup reflective of the artistry in our community and some nationally touring ensembles. I’m looking forward to being out there with my community.”
Throughout June, the A2SF will host music performances from artists such as local-favorite Dani Darling to world-renowned headliners like actress and singer Renée Elise Goldsberry.
For the music portion of the festival, the headliners for each day are as follows:
June 9th – 8:45 p.m. – Dames Brown
June 10th – 8:30 p.m. – Shake Steady
June 11th – 8:30 p.m. – Lady Sunshine and the X-Band
June 13th – 8:30 p.m. – Delta 88
June 14th – 8:15 p.m. – Madison McFerrin
June 15th – 8:00 p.m. – Renée Elise Goldsberry
June 15th – 8:15 p.m. – Supercoolwicked
June 16th – 8:45 p.m. – Dani Darling
June 17th – 8:30 p.m. – Orquesta Ritmo
June 18th – 8:30 p.m. – Na Bonsai
June 20th – 8:15 p.m. – Tank and the Bangas
June 21st – 8:30 p.m. – Peter Madcat Ruth’s C.A.R.Ma. Quartet
June 22nd – 8:30 p.m. –Pajamas
June 23rd – 9:00 p.m. – Athletic Mic League
June 24th – 8:30 p.m. – Erin Zindle and the Ragbirds
June 25th – 8:00 p.m. – Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit with Peter One
June 25th – 8:30 p.m. – George Bedard and the Kingpins
According to the A2SF website, only performances for Renée Elise Goldsberry and Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit will require a purchased ticket. Prices range from $45-$117. All others will be free of charge.
Along with music, the A2SF will host several nightly films to conclude the nightly festivities. According to Michelon, he calls the night-time film an event that everyone should experience.
“For many kids in the area, the movie is a rite of passage,” Michelon said. “Sitting on the lawn, enjoying snacks, and being with friends. Any summer festival has some big blockbusters, from Black Panther to Ghostbusters. There’s something about the experience of having a cold drink, popcorn, and sitting out and enjoying the film with 1,000 of your closest friends.”
Regarding Films, these are the listed features for each day:
June 13th – 10:00 p.m. – Muppets Take Manhattan
June 14th – 10:00 p.m. – Everything Everywhere All At Once
June 15th – 10:00 p.m. – Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
June 20th – 10:00 p.m. – This is Spinal Tap
June 21st – 10:00 p.m. – Inside Out
June 22nd – 10:00 p.m. – Ghostbusters
June 25th – 10:00 p.m. – Elvis
Prior to the festivities in June, on May 12, A2SF hosted a fundraiser celebrating its 40th anniversary at The Rabbit Hole in downtown Ann Arbor. Titled Debut, the kickoff event for the A2SF offered a standing dinner, live performances, and a silent auction.
“The fundraiser was all performance-based,” Michelon said. “This fundraiser is a great way to come out and support the organization, but also have a fun evening. For the 40th anniversary, anytime you have a milestone like this, you have to take a moment, reflect and figure out where you are and where you want to be. We certainly evolved a bit, but it’s plenty to be excited about in the years ahead.”
While he did not specify the exact number, Michelon stated that the A2SF generates millions in revenue for the city of Ann Arbor. He stated that he expects the same amount of economic impact for this year’s event.
For more information on the A2SF, Debut, and ticket prices. Information can be found on at A2SF.org.
Antonio Cooper is a freelance journalist from Detroit, Michigan. His coverage of music festivals and interviews with local celebrities appeared in The E-Current Magazine, The Detroit Metro Times, XXL Magazine, RichMagDigital, The Ann Arbor Observer, and Pop Magazine.