Madison police, Frank Productions gear up for most student-involved Freakfest yet

Freakfest organizers said the unprecedented student involved in booking bands and planning for the seventh annual State Street Halloween bash was a refreshing change this year.

Freakfest organizers said the unprecedented student involved in booking bands and planning for the seventh annual State Street Halloween bash was a refreshing change this year.

Image By: Aevyrie Roessler and Aevyrie Roessler

City officials said there will be no major procedural changes to Freakfest policing this year, and Frank Productions thanked students for their unprecedented role in organizing this year’s annual State Street Halloween bash at a press conference Wednesday.

The biggest change to Freakfest for 2013 is the addition of a WSUM-sponsored stage, to be located at the corner of Frances and State Streets, which will feature five regional bands; all unsigned, “emerging acts,” booked by University of Wisconsin-Madison students, according to Frank Productions promoter Tag Evers. Those artists will include The Living Statues, The Sharrows, Boy Blue, Vic and Gab, and Gabe Burdulis.

Evers said Frank Productions is pleased with the “major student involvement” this year. Going into the seventh annual Freakfest, Evers said “it seems like every year it gets better and better and 2013 is no different.”

The University Bookstore is selling tickets at the same rate as last year, according to Evers, who also said he expects a similar turnout this year as last, when approximately 33,000 people attended Freakfest.

Madison Police Department Central District Captain Carl Gloede said he anticipates Freakfest to be “more normal” this year because there are no competing downtown events, such as the Badger home football game that coincided with the party last year. However, he said the number of officers on duty will remain the same throughout the event, and State Street and all cross streets will still close at 4:45 p.m. Saturday.

According to Gloede, the MPD consistently arrests fewer individuals each year at Freakfest and said although he expects the trend to continue this year, attendees should manage their alcohol consumption and be aware that inappropriate costume props, such as weapon replicas, will not be permitted.

The main entrances will be positioned and secured similarly to previous years, with two located at the intersection of Lake and State Streets, one at each of the 100 and 200 blocks of West Johnson Street and one at the intersection of Frances Street and University Avenue. Tickets will cost $8 in advance and $12 the day of the show, and are available for purchase at the entry points.

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