CINCINNATI - The MidPoint Music Festival is back, marking its 12th year in the Tri-State area and drawing crowds to its stages from near and far. This year, the festival has added a sidekick to its entertaining schedule, rolling out the MidPoint Music Festival at Findlay Market.
Known as MPMF.FM, the three-day, free event begins on Sept. 27 and will showcase 13 local, regional, and international bands. There will be two stages: a main stage on the south side of the market in front of S&J Bakery and Café, and a second stage set up next to the Over-the-Rhine Biergarten. Other Over-the-Rhine business will be open during the festival, providing plenty of shopping and dining experiences including a Veggie Valet located on Elm Street next to the Biergarten, where shoppers can check their groceries while they enjoy the performances.
OTR In The Spotlight
Hosting the music festival in Over-the-Rhine was particularly important to MPMF music director Rhne’ Dean (aka Venomous Valdez). Dean was the Operating Manager for last year’s main festival and was happy to curate the events of the day at Findlay Market.
“This is my city,” Dean said. “During the week of MidPoint Music Festival I feel (the city) comes alive with this excited energy!”
She believes Findlay Market and the MidPoint Music Fest are a perfect match: promoting Cincinnati in a positive way and changing people’s minds about Over-the-Rhine. Dean believes hosting this festival right in the heart of Findlay Market will promote a diverse crowd.
Traditionally, Findlay Market has been overlooked as a venue for the main festival due to its daytime operating hours. This year the partnership with Midpoint will allow Findlay to expand engage the neighborhood and the general public.
Kelly Lanser, promotion and events manager for Corporation for Findlay Market, said adding MPMF.FM to the main festival has two goals. First, it helps increase buzz around the main MidPoint Music Festival event. Second, it expands the experience of the festival to attendees, such as families and other non-traditional MPMF audiences, because it is a daytime event.
Strike Up The Bands
Selecting the acts for this first-time festival was also an important part of the process. Lanser said the Corporation for Findlay Market will continue to support local bands, but also wanted to feature national and international acts.
“We are continually trying to introduce the market to people visiting Cincinnati,” she said. “We are excited to see bands perform from Vancouver to New York.”
Kelly Fine of Young Heirlooms expressed admiration for the festival and said that the band is happy to participate. She feels the festival is something that everyone should be excited about.
“This is the one time I see the city cut loose,” Fine said. “Amazing music from all over the Midwest and beyond, people emerging from the suburbs and from every nook and cranny around the tri-state to celebrate our beautiful city and the music that we have. The city feels full, alive, and excited about art. It’s heaven.”
Other bands such as The Sundresses, Young Colt, and Ben Lapps shared Young Heirloom’s pride for Cincinnati and Findlay Market, each agreeing on the importance of highlighting local talent and drawing the community to Over-the-Rhine.
On Sept. 28, Rhinegeist Brewery is hosting a related event: a free show featuring three bands, which starts at 6 p.m.
If You Go:
- MPMF.FM kicks off Sept. 27 at 11:00 am
- Runs through Sept. 29
- Location: 1801 Race Street, Cincinnati
- See the schedule of bands online