Jan. 14—The Dancing Rabbit Music Festival is returning to McAlester for 2022 — with three dates already set aside for performances.
Dancing Rabbit Music Association President Blake Lynch said Friday that dates are scheduled in May, June and July for the free outdoor music festival, held in downtown McAlester. Show dates are May 7, June 11 and July 16.
Plans call for the names of the artists who will be performing to be released each Friday, beginning on Jan. 21.
Lynch said all of the dates already have artists booked to perform, but final details are being worked out before their names are made public.
“We have shows for all of those dates,” Lynch said.
Once again plans call for the outdoor stage to be set up along Choctaw Avenue, between Third Street and Fifth Street, which will be closed to traffic for the events. Food trucks will be set up at the site; a beer garden will be in place and other things will also be similar to last year.
Lynch said one change is in the opening acts.
“Last year, we had national touring acts, plus local artists,” Lynch said. He said this year there will be three artists performing at each of the three shows.
“There’s going to be nine concerts with artists that have been been touring around the country and around the world,” Lynch said. “We’re also trying to broaden the horizons of the music, which will be a little different than last year.”
Each of the shows will feature an act that’s been seeing more than a million streams a month, he said.
The Dancing Rabbit Music Festival began in 2021, featuring a series of three concert events during the summer, presented to the audience free of charge.
Last year’s Dancing Rabbit Festival headliners included Charlie Parr, John Fullbright and Band of Heathens, along with Parker Millsap, who performed a special fall show. All of the 2021 artists were warmly received, which led organizers to conclude that the musical events were a success.
Festivals are organized by the Dancing Rabbit Music Association Board, which consists of Blake, Vice President Josh Hass and member Kyle Spruce. Lots of other volunteers and sponsors help make the events possible.
Organizers said in 2021 their goal was to bring live music back to McAlester.
Why bring the Dancing Rabbit Festival back at this time?
“First of all, we loved the response of the community,” Lynch said. “We had exciting events and want to keep the momentum going to make McAlester a big-time festival city.”
Contact James Beaty at [email protected]