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    Awhile back, we reported on the fallout between Abbey Road on the River (AROTR), one of the world’s largest Beatles festivals, and the Galt House hotel, forcing the concert series to move out of Downtown Louisville.  After this year’s festival at Belvedere Festival Park, there was a lot of concern over the fate of the event.  With ten months of anxiety over where the Fab Four festival was going to make its new home, we’re relieved to find out that it will still be around here - just across the river in Jeffersonville.

    “We weren’t crying wolf – we had a real problem,” says Gary Jacob, founder and organizer of AROTR.  “It was like checkmate [for us].”

    The festival initially tried to maintain its close ties to the Louisville community.  While places such as the Marriot hotel and Waterfront Park were considered, AROTR believed that it would ultimately hurt the concert-goers if it stayed in the River City. 

    “We tried to stay in Louisville,” says Jacob.  “Louisville is busy doing other things [and] our event became less important.”

    The festival, which will be held at Big Four Station Park starting 2017, could have made its way a bit farther than simply across the river.  Other cities that had been considered include Atlantic City, Dallas, and Knoxville.   After much hard-thought deliberation, however, Abbey Road on the River is going to make its berth in Jeffersonville.

    “Jeffersonville presented the option, and now we have a true partnership with the city,” sayings Jacob.  “When you weigh the pros and cons, it wasn’t a tough decision.”

    Abbey Road on the River will be taking place at Jeffersonville's Riverstage.  Image: Jeffersonville Riverstage 

    As of right now, the festival is scheduled for three years in Jeffersonville, but if everything comes up roses, the festival could make its permanent mainstay in the city.

    “I hope [the festival] is there for fifty years,” says Jacob.  “I mean, the Beatles are going to last forever, so there’s no reason for it not to [last forever].”

    As for the quality of the festival, the move should not frighten fans.  AROTR is hoping to keep the music alive, and in a big way.  Even now, the 2017 festival is looking like it will shape into the biggest festival yet.

    “We’re getting six of the biggest sixties acts in the country,” says Jacob.  “We’re stoked.”

    The 2017 Abbey Road on the River festival is currently scheduled to take place on Memorial Day weekend (May 25-29, 2017).  To learn more about the festival, you can visit their website. 


    Cover Image: Abbey Road on the River

    Brett Gordon's picture

    About Brett Gordon

    I'm a writer, a musician, and an almost-graduate from the University of Louisville. I currently live in Shelbyville, but please, don't hold that against me.

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