Michigan History: Jammin’ in Jackson

Also see Michigan’s Woodstock: The Goose Lake Festival on Michigan in Pictures.

Goose Lake Rock Festival by edwards_sa

The headlines of the local newspaper read, “125,000 and Still Coming.” The reporter of the story wrote, “Goose Lake Park’s rock festival is no county fair, state fair or world’s fair. It’s a young people’s fair.”

Held in August 1970, the Goose Lake festival was similar to the more famous outdoor concert near Woodstock, New York, that took place a year earlier. Some reports said 200,000 people attended the three-day outdoor concert near Jackson, Michigan. The two dozen bands that played at Goose Lake included such big names as Chicago, Jethro Tull and Bob Seger.

But Goose Lake was not without controversy. Local residents opposed the festival, fearing the commotion that would result when thousands of young people gathered near their homes.

Despite the huge crowd of people, there were no reports of physical violence. A University of Michigan doctor, one of a dozen doctors at the festival providing free medical treatment, thought the absence of violence “was a credit to a generation.”

While there was no violence at Goose Lake, the popular use of illegal drugs, especially marijuana, was a concern for authorities. To avoid sparking a “riot,” the police only arrested drug users or dealers who were outside the park. After the concert, Governor William Milliken was outraged about drug use at Goose Lake. “Rock festivals are a great idea,” the governor said, “but without the drugs.” A doctor at the concert wondered if the reports of drug abuse “may have been exaggerated.” At the festival’s four hospital tents, 400 people were treated for an assortment of illnesses and injuries. But there were only a few drug overdose patients.

When the Goose Lake festival ended, local citizens expressed their thoughts about having hosted the biggest rock festival in Michigan history. Some complained of a lack of sleep because the music was so loud. One local resident found the concert “a nerve-racking deal,” while another said he would fight future rock festivals “to the last ditch.” Others disagreed. A Goose Lake farmer said all the noise and activity did not affect his cows who he said were “contented.” A gas station attendant said the station was unusually busy during the weekend, but things went “smoothly . . . we had no problems at all.”

To learn more about Michigan’s history, visit Seeking Michigan.

Here’s a video of crowd scenes at Goose Lake and check out this overflight:

Pure Michigan Statewide Sing-along premiers

Rob Bliss & Jeff Barrett, creators of the fantastic Grand Rapids lip dub video premiered their Pure Michigan Statewide Sing-along at halftime of the Lions game on Sunday. It was filmed in 50 Michigan cities in 7 days. It’s a pretty cool travelogue of the Great Lakes State in under 4 minutes.

Check out the finished video below and also don’t miss the behind the scenes blog from PureMichigan.org.

Tweet & Taste Michigan: Wines from Old Mission Peninsula

Courtney & Shannon Casey of MichiganByTheBottle.com are all about letting you know what’s what in Michigan’s fast-growing wine industry. One fantastic thing that they are doing are the Tweet & Taste Michigan virtual wine tastings conducted through Twitter.

View from Chateau Chantal by troyryans
View from Chateau Chantal by troyryans

Their next Tweet & Taste takes place tomorrow night (Monday Jun 7 @ 8 PM). Sorry about the late notice. Featured will be the wines of the Old Mission Peninsula near Traverse City. The wines they will be tasting are:

Over at #TTMI on Twitter, Michigan Master Sommelier   Claudia Tyagi aka winegenie is educating folks on the wines of Old Mission. Here’s a couple tweets – definitely try and pick up one or more of the bottles above and take part – it’s fun and you can do it in your PJs! (check the video below for a step by step explanation of TTMI).

RT @cortcase @tweetandtastemi: Read up on Wineries of Old MIssion Peninsula to prepare for TTMI WOMP on Monday #ttmi http://ow.ly/1Utz0

CGT began it all http://ow.ly/1UJ8C 1st OMP winery, 1st Vinifera #ttmi Leadership! #wine #Michigan Go Riesling!!!!

For more about the Wineries of Old Mission Peninsula, see their web site at wineriesofoldmission.com and also check out this Winery Report on the Old Mission from Toledo Wines & Vines.

The Michigan Shakespeare Festival

Michigan Shakespeare FestivalThe Michigan Shakespeare Festival has been presenting the timeless themes and glorious language of William Shakespeare since 1995, growing each year into a premier regional event that draws respected actors from across the nation, and satisfied audiences from throughout the Midwest. Now in their 15th season, the festival presents quality professional theatre celebrating some of the famed Bard’s most notable works at the Baughman Theater on the campus of Jackson Community College.


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