GRandJazzFest announces 2014 dates, new partnership

DTE Energy Foundation returns as presenting sponsor; collaboration with the Grand Rapids Art Museum creates VIP area

 

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. – JAN. 28, 2014 – GRandJazzFest presented by DTE Energy Foundation returns to Rosa Parks Circle in downtown Grand Rapids, Mich., Aug. 16 and 17, the third consecutive year for the weekend-long jazz festival.

The two-day festival will again be free thanks to presenting sponsor DTE Energy Foundation, the City of Grand Rapids and other sponsoring organizations and individuals.

“This city loves its jazz,” GRandJazzFest Founder Audrey Sundstrom said. “Nearly 10,000 people attended our second annual festival over the course of the two days – coming from as nearby as local neighborhoods to as far away as other states and Canada. With the great turnout and positive feedback, we’re excited to be producing a third annual festival.”

GRandJazzFest also is pleased to announce a special relationship with the Grand Rapids Art Museum: “Under an agreement with GRAM, we’ll expand our VIP area to the GRAM front terrace off Rosa Parks Circle where refreshments and snacks will be provided. The VIP area is for sponsors at a certain level of giving. Additionally, GRAM will have an outdoor bar set up on its back-terrace area for attendees who would like to purchase and consume adult refreshments and enjoy the festival while still being outdoors,” Sundstrom said.

Festival planning is underway, with artist selections to be announced in the spring. Like last year, 10 diverse jazz artists and bands will perform, including a major headline act.

Sundstrom said diversity of the lineup is key: “Jazz has so many sub-genres – Latin, straight-up, contemporary, soul and big band, to name a few. If diversity has a sound, it’s the sound of jazz.”

“DTE Energy Foundation is proud to support the diversity and vibrancy that GRandJazzFest brings to downtown,” said DTE Energy Regional Manager Roger Royer. “We’ve been thrilled with the past two GRandJazzFests and look forward to the third annual event!”

Grand Rapids city commissioners approved GRandJazzFest as one of 24 events that it will co-sponsor in 2014, a distinction only given to events that have proven to be successful and enrich the community.

In addition to DTE Energy Foundation, the City of Grand Rapids, and GRAM, sponsors for the 2014 event to date include GR and Jazz, IntentPR, Gilmore Collection, Hilger Hammond, Amway Hotel Corporation, Experience Grand Rapids, Meijer, Mercy Health, Mike July Web Design, Hungerford Nichols, ClarkHill, Icon Sign Company and Swift Printing. Sponsorship opportunities are available here: http://grandjazzfest.org/sponsors/

“We are so grateful to all of our sponsors for their support,” Sundstrom said. “We’re seeking additional sponsors to join our sponsors from last year in bringing a full weekend of free jazz performances to West Michigan!”

People can get a taste of what the 2013 jazz festival was like by viewing the “recap” videos here: http://grandjazzfest.org/newsroom/video/

More information on GRandJazzFest can be found at www.grandjazzfest.org, and at the festival’s Facebook and Twitter sites – www.facebook.com/grandjazzfest and www.twitter.com/grandjazzfest.

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About GRandJazzFest

GRandJazzFest presented by DTE Energy Foundation is a community event of the nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization “GR and Jazz” founded in 2012, with the purpose of promoting and bringing awareness of jazz and related arts to new and diverse audiences through educational programs and community events. GRandJazzFest 2014 is a FREE weekend-long event that runs Saturday, Aug. 16, from noon until 10 p.m., and Sunday, Aug. 17, from noon p.m. to 8 p.m., featuring jazz artists who are primarily Michigan-based. GRandJazzFest brings together notable jazz performers as well as highlights up-and-coming artists for diverse audiences. GRandJazzFest is being held at Rosa Parks Circle, a central location in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids, where attendees can enjoy music, support local businesses and visit other Grand Rapids attractions. The festival is FREE. More information at www.grandjazzfest.org.

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