First, Hear Festival is a music and arts festival. There are going to be two sections of the festival, with one being free to the public and the other requiring payment for admission.
The arts, vendors, and food will all be available to the public free of charge. This means that the public can come and see the incredible art put together by our artists. We will also have an auction going on, showcasing the artwork of local and regional artists. This auction will help support both the artists and the work of Here/Hear. As well, we hope to have a community art installation in progress, with two local artists working with community members to produce and original piece of incredible art. The idea behind having such talented artists being present, and having them there for free, is to have a place of connection for people. Here/Hear supports the arts, all arts, because we believe that the arts are a place where the mentally ill and their loved ones and others connect in an honest and direct way. As well, it’s a place where the mentally ill and their loved ones can express themselves without fear, without stigma.
Hear Festival will also include other vendors. We will have an excellent local barbecue crew called Chubby Buddies BBQ. They serve some of the best barbecue in the area, with fantastic pulled pork, brisket, ribs, and the like. We also have Sugar Shack Bakery coming, with their signature cupcakes and other various treats. Both Chubby Buddies and Sugar Shack will be in the “free” section, available for anyone to come and experience their delectable delights.
In addition to Earphorik, we also have three local bands coming to play. The first is Pablo’s Great Revenge, who is a great, multi-genre band hailing from all over the Michiana area. They play a bevy of originals, while also covering everyone from Sublime to Bob Dylan. They will be joined by Slow Orbit, another genre bending band featuring musicians who have toured the country in their own right. They bring a great live show and we’re looking forward to the energy they bring to Hear Festival. The last band is a new group on the scene: The Angles. They have played around South Bend, Indiana and are a great mix of new wave and indie rock. They bring a youthful energy that will get you moving.
But, the main purpose of Hear Festival is to raise awareness for what Here/Hear does and to fight the stigma that accompanies having a mental illness. We are going to tell stories and we are going to have places to interact and to stand up and be heard and to, in general, erase the stigma around mental illness. We are also going to promote the services that Here/Hear offers, as well as opening up dialogues with people. In all, this is an event for us to do our work and showcase our work. And we believe it is important work – much more important than simply putting on a festival. But the festival will be a good place to start and to showcase the necessary and vital work we are involved in for the betterment of our communities.
We hope you will join us.