Summerfest attendance down in 2018

Visitor total fell 8 percent from festival's 50th edition

Summerfest saw a decline in attendance coming off of its 50th edition in 2017, with a total of 766,192 attending this year’s festival, Milwaukee World Festival Inc. officials announced today.

The new U.S. Cellular Connection Stage on the north end of Henry Maier Festival Park.

The total was down 8 percent from the 2017 festival, which brought in 831,769 visitors. Festival officials noted that this year’s 11-day festival included three days of excessive heat warnings and two rainy days, which may have affected attendance.

It follows two years of consecutive attendance growth for the Big Gig. In 2016, attendance totaled 804,116. In 2015, attendance was 772,000.

This year’s festival included the unveiling of the new U.S. Cellular Connection Stage, north gate and community plaza and the Klement’s Sausage & Beer Garden.

Artists who performed at the American Family Insurance Amphitheater included: Imagine Dragons, James Taylor and Bonnie Raitt, Halsey and Logic, Florida Georgia Line, Dave Matthews Band, J. Cole, Journey and Def Leppard, Shawn Mendes, Blake Shelton, The Weeknd and Arcade Fire.

“In 2018, Summerfest delivered on its promise to offer one of the most diverse line-ups in the industry which appealed to our entire community,” said Don Smiley, president and CEO of Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. “I want to thank our fans, sponsors, volunteers, Milwaukee Police Department, Milwaukee County Transit System, vendors and staff who persevered through five challenging weather days. Despite the rain and heat, our organization provided 11 great days of music, food and fun and contributed significantly to our local economy,”

About 14 percent of all attendees, 106,294 patrons in total, took advantage of an admission promotion this year.

Read more economic data reports at the BizTracker page.

Summerfest saw a decline in attendance coming off of its 50th edition in 2017, with a total of 766,192 attending this year’s festival, Milwaukee World Festival Inc. officials announced today.

The new U.S. Cellular Connection Stage on the north end of Henry Maier Festival Park.

The total was down 8 percent from the 2017 festival, which brought in 831,769 visitors. Festival officials noted that this year’s 11-day festival included three days of excessive heat warnings and two rainy days, which may have affected attendance.

It follows two years of consecutive attendance growth for the Big Gig. In 2016, attendance totaled 804,116. In 2015, attendance was 772,000.

This year’s festival included the unveiling of the new U.S. Cellular Connection Stage, north gate and community plaza and the Klement’s Sausage & Beer Garden.

Artists who performed at the American Family Insurance Amphitheater included: Imagine Dragons, James Taylor and Bonnie Raitt, Halsey and Logic, Florida Georgia Line, Dave Matthews Band, J. Cole, Journey and Def Leppard, Shawn Mendes, Blake Shelton, The Weeknd and Arcade Fire.

“In 2018, Summerfest delivered on its promise to offer one of the most diverse line-ups in the industry which appealed to our entire community,” said Don Smiley, president and CEO of Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. “I want to thank our fans, sponsors, volunteers, Milwaukee Police Department, Milwaukee County Transit System, vendors and staff who persevered through five challenging weather days. Despite the rain and heat, our organization provided 11 great days of music, food and fun and contributed significantly to our local economy,”

About 14 percent of all attendees, 106,294 patrons in total, took advantage of an admission promotion this year.

Read more economic data reports at the BizTracker page.

Comments

  1. Rick says:

    The scuttlebutt is that there was a bomb threat just outside the grounds on the first day. Not surprising that it was not reported in the daily or broadcast media. Attended on the last day and greeted by a “friendly” warning to not come in with certain items and that all bags will be inspected, etc. This safety procedure is well known to those who attend sporting events, etc., but the megaphone shouting of these orders was disarming and not what most of us have become familiar with at Summerfest. Also, the grounds seemed dirty and worn. Seems like this fest has turned a bad corner in in its history.

  2. Randy says:

    Due to all the horrendous restrictions and horrible parking, I chose not to attend plus there weren’t any acts worth seeing. The same food is available at the state fair. and who wants to sit in the sun when it’s 90 outside

  3. The Sheriff says:

    So Don collects a million dollar a year comp package to deliver “a diverse music festival”, not a lineup that drives attendance?

    Heck Don….I bet if we slashed your comp 80%, we could book even a more “diverse” lineup.