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FestWhat other explanation can there be for extending what is already the wildest, drunkest fest in punk rock (and therefore in music period) for an extra two days? Look, we (you, me, all our FEST friends) already drink Gainesville dry by Sunday. This begs a few questions. First, Where will they get the extra booze we require for two more days?? Second, assuming they obtain said booze, how could we be expected to survive such madness??? Clearly, something foul is in the air. Only pre-meditated murderous intent can explain it.

Let me clarify for those scratching their heads. FEST is actually only gaining one day – Halloween falls on Thursday and so was lumped into FEST’s normal weekend. But PRE-FEST in Tampa has grown magnitudes, jumping from one venue to four and one day to two. So that’s two days and 19 extra shows to attend; 100 extra bands to see. I swear, it is impossible to accomplish! You WILL die trying!

Now granted, PRE-FEST is usually seen as fairly optional, but manipulative, villainous Tony Weinbender has prepared for this. You see, while all 100 bands performing at PRE-FEST will also be playing FEST, a fair amount of them are doing special Tampa-only sets. Additionally, it is several hundred dollars cheaper to fly into Tampa than it is Gainesville. So you are rewarded monetarily for going to PRE-FEST.

“BUT HOW THE HELL DO I GET FROM TAMPA TO GAINESVILLE,” you ask. “I don’t want to spend all day on the craigslist rideshare forum, or the FEST board, or worse, GREYHOUND!” Ha! You thought you could get out of PRE-FEST and your untimely demise that easily, did you? NAY. The evil, vile, treacherous mastermind you thought you knew has made sure this barrier will not hold you back either. You will ride aboard the Pork-Chop FEST Express to and from Gainesville, a goddamn chartered bus that includes a grab bag of goodies no one else will receive, including an exclusive tee you can rock in your casket days after your unavoidable death between the hours of 2am and noon, Monday, November 4th.

Slay-dies and Gentle-mangleds, there is no point even discussing the lineup. Unlike other fests, and the reason I made arrangements for FEST in April, but ultimately backed out of competing Riot Fest altogether, at FEST, the music (although what bonds us together) is only a fraction of why we do this year in and year out. This is why hellspawn Weinbender doesn’t even bother to do a proper lineup on the FEST website.

There are no proper headliners.
No band is any more important than any other band.
The music is no more important than the party.
The party no more important than the pool.
The pool no more important than the flea market.
The flea market no more important than the No Idea BBQ.
The No Idea BBQ no more important than the stressface tattoo you will get while drunk off your ass on Saturday.
The stressface tattoo and none of the above anywhere close to as important as the friends from across the globe you haven’t seen since last year and the new friendships you will make standing in line to see your favorite bands play in front of their largest crowd all year.
Which makes it all the more sad that you will fucking die this week.

May we FEST in peace.

-Luke Toney