Glow in The Park Music Festival (GITP) – Something totally different in Grand Rapids, Michigan
An interview with Jason Hachigian – one of the organizers of GITP
iHeartRadio’s 104.5 WSNX in West Michigan presents a new electronic music festival in the Grand Rapids area. This event will be the first of its kind to occur at Fifth Third Ballpark (home of the West Michigan Whitecaps baseball team) on September 28th. With a head lineup boasting multi-platinum artist Cheat Codes and the red-hot bass producer, Illenium, this event is sure to leave the crowd fully charged with melodic, bass-fueled vibes for days to follow. Others to perform include Cash Cash, London On Da Track, Party Pupils, and Snowmass.
Since I live near GR, I personally am planning on going to this unique one-day festival myself. With that, I got to interview Jason Hachigian, one of the main organizers of this inaugural festival. Since this is the first year of the festival – I had the unique opportunity to talk with Jason and get his take on what it means to hold an EDM festival for the first time.
TFV: Jason – what is your background in EDM festivals and what got you interested in holding a music festival in the first place?
Jason: My co-organizers and I have been part of many different EDM festivals for a very long time including ones in Miami, Chicago, and Detroit. Ultra in Miami, in particular, has been a big influence on my interest in creating a unique music festival experience that is community-based and influenced.
TFV: Do you have a day job or is this kind of thing going to be your day job?
Jason: I am part of several companies including one called Silent Management Group. They work with radio and talent which has a direct relationship with what we are trying to do with GITP. I also manage different talent including Snowmass who will be performing at GITP.
TFV: Why Grand Rapids Michigan?
Jason: I’m originally from Michigan and we chose Grand Rapids for its unique market and community support. I have ties in both GR and Detroit media, so we felt this was the right place to start a festival.
TFV: How long have you been in the planning stage for GITP?
Jason: We have been in planning since April 20, 2016. So, a little under 2.5 years
TFV: What makes your festival unique:
Jason: We truly believe in the community aspect of this and we are taking an approach to the festival that shows we are “ALL” in this together. This includes having the performers be directly connected to the audience beyond just performing. That’s why you will see the various acts taking on attendees at the Swagtron eBike track in electric bike races. Swagtron is one of our sponsors and has been great to work with for this unique part of the festival. We will also have a Fun Zone with various things to do like: batting cages, festival basketball hoops for vs your friends, the Glow Tunnel, Glow Zone Fun Zone, Silent Disco, A huge LED wall, and Instagram Art Wall and photo area, an 8×12 foot custom mural, and Local Vending. In addition, we will also have the World’s largest Glow Foam Cannons!
TFV: Why a one-day festival?
Jason: We want to crawl before we walk. So, this year is one day. We may grow as we get ready for next year and years to come. We are already working on plans for next year.
TFV: How did you go about selecting talent?
Jason: Without going into too much detail – we did our homework (and lots of it)!
TFV: Was it easy/hard to secure a big name like Illenium to headline GITP?
Jason: The short answer is no, but we put in a total team effort with our various industry partnerships and relationships.
TFV: Concerning logistics – Since this is a one-day (non-camping) festival, can you share some details for the following?
Jason: Parking? We got a ton of it.
Can you leave the festival and re-entry? No re-entry for basic safety reasons. This will limit things being snuck in. We are all about keeping our attendees safe!
What can you bring into the venue? Chairs. Empty water pack. No liquids of any type will be allowed but there will be plenty of free water available
Can you tailgate before the event? Yes. Come early if you like (noon is preferred if you tailgate). Gates open at 3:00 PM.
TFV: Do you plan to do this every year from now on? And if so, how do you envision the event growing?
Jason: We have a strong outline on where we want to go but there is a learn as you go attitude too. We intend to do more of these in other cities too. We have plans laid out for the next 5 years.
TFV: Assuming this is a big success – what’s next?
Jason: Follow-ups and planning for next year. As I mentioned before we are already creating plans for next year since it can take some time to get things lined up. But right now, we are super busy just getting things finalized for the 28th. We are hoping for 5000 to show for this year’s event. Anything at or above that in attendance will be a humble blessing.
Personally, I am looking forward to seeing first hand why GITP is going to be so unique. I plan to follow up with some posts during the event and providing a post-festival report. If it is as unique and communal as Jason says, then I am in for something special! Getting the total Grand Rapids community involved by working with all facets of the community including linking up with charitable organizations should be something worth seeing and being a part of. Us here at The Festival Voice are all about total inclusion and community, so this festival is the kind we love seeing happening. I highly suggest you go to this event, especially since the time and monetary investment are not high. With it being a one-day festival, tickets are currently only $59 for 1 GA ticket or $99 for 2. This will be a great chance to not only see some of the best EDM acts perform but to interact with and even meet them at various times of the day.
Ticket info and more about the festival can be found at https://glowintheparkmusicfest.com/