EPICENTER FESTIVAL PUTS THE ROCK BACK IN ROCKINGHAM
Next May, Dragway Again Will Host Superstars of Rock, Metal and Alternative Music


ROCKINGHAM, N.C. – Almost a quarter century after bringing Metallica, Soundgarden, Sponge, Rancid and Rage Against the Machine to Richmond County as part of a bias-busting Lollapalooza concert, Rockingham Dragway once again will become the epicenter of rock ‘n roll next May when it plays host to the inaugural Epicenter Festival produced by Danny Wimmer Presents (DWP).

Although an original announcement erroneously identified The Rock Speedway as the site of the three-day spring music extravaganza, Rockingham Dragway owner Steve Earwood confirmed Tuesday that he has signed a 10-year agreement with DWP to utilize land adjacent to the drag strip as the focal point of the festival.

The Rock Speedway and Entertainment Complex, which sits across U.S. Highway 1 from the drag racing facility, will be utilized primary for parking and camping for a crowd projected at between 90,000 to 100,000 by County Manager Bryan Land.

Jointly, Rockingham Dragway, The Rock Speedway and Entertainment Complex, Richmond County land and privately-owned acreage will comprise what the promoter has designated the “Rockingham Festival Grounds.”

The musical talent lineup will be announced at 9 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 10, and tickets will go on sale Dec. 14.

“Based on our past experience, this should provide an enormous economic boost for Richmond County and the surrounding area,” Earwood said. “It’s a major coup for our area insomuch as other venues, including some in South Carolina, were pushing very hard for the festival.”

The Dragway has a history of hosting large-scale events unrelated to drag racing. In addition to Lollapalooza, it hosted an encore performance by Metallica in 2000 along with several other concerts and, for the last several years, has been a preferred stop on the Rugged Maniacs tour in which men and women, without benefit of vehicles, negotiate a grueling obstacle course.

According to DWP CEO Danny Hayes, the Epicenter Festival represents the next step in the evolution process for Danny Wimmer Presents which for the last eight years produced the popular Carolina Rebellion festival.

“The creation of the ‘epicenter of rock n’ roll’ in the heart of North Carolina gives us the ability to expand on the festival experience,” Wimmer said, “with enhanced camping amenities, nighttime entertainment with no curfew and expanded food and beverage offerings, all highlighted by a massive music lineup covering the spectrum of rock, metal and alternative rock music.

“There’s always a next level to strive for,” Wimmer concluded, “and after eight great years of Carolina Rebellion, Epicenter is that next level.”
 
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