WALKER - Walker’s third annual party in the pasture, Moondance Jam III, is set for July 8 and 9 at Moondance Ranch, seven miles east of Walker.
A lineup of country and rock music is on this year's ticket. Headliners include Gary Puckett, Mel McDaniel, Pirates of the Mississippi, Johnny PayCheck and Evangeline. The lineup also includes popular regional and local acts: Hoopsnakes, Killer Hayseeds, Dacotah and two Hackensack based bands, Sparky and the Time Pirates and the Dead Stiks.
Promoters Bill and Kathy Bieloh of Walker are hoping for an exceptional year. Although the last two years have seen cold weather and rain, there was no shortage of fun for those who attended. "We’ve doubled the lineup of entertainment," said Bieloh. "We also have a lot of new vendors this year selling etched glassware, western wear (boots, hats and bandanas), a variety of food and games such as Water Wars." Long range forecasts are predicting hot temperatures and sunny skies, although Bieloh said that with the number of tents at the ranch, weather should not be much of a factor.
Thursday night, Benson’s Emporium will host a "Pre-Jam" jam from 7 p.m. to midnight. The pre-jam will feature Sparky and the Time Pirates, Dead Stiks and Mel McDaniel's Band and Pirates of the Mississippi. The pre-jam is open to the public.
Moondance Ranch will be offering trail rides and wagon rides. "We have plenty of camping space," Bieloh added. "I have a one-hundred acre field. Nobody will be turned away for camping." Cost is $10 per vehicle or tent for the weekend of camping.
The Cass County Sheriff's Mounted Posse will be on 24-hour duty during the festival for security. Also, Walker Ambulance Service will have a first aid tent available.
Ticket prices are $25 in advance (up to July 7) for the whole weekend, and $15 for a daily gate pass. Special VIP tickets are available. The VIP ticket will feature free food (steak and shrimp dinner each night), beverages, autograph sessions and more.
"This is the first time this big of a lineup of national recording artists has been brought to the Walker area," Bieloh said.
For ticket information, call 1-800-833-1118 or 218-547-1313. Local ticket outlets in Walker are Bieloh's Family Foods and Benson's Emporium.