Grateville Dead Fest

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Grateville Dead Fest
Grateville Dead Music Festival.jpg
Location(s)Louisville Waterfront Park
Louisville, Kentucky
Years active2015–present
Founded byDennie Humphrey and Ashley Angel

Grateville Dead Fest is an outdoor music and arts festival in Louisville, Kentucky catering to fans of The Grateful Dead band on the Brown Forman Amphitheater overlooking the scenic Ohio River and boat docks.[1] The festival typically includes two-to three days of jam band music by regional artists from the Kentucky, Tennessee and Ohio areas.[2] The venue includes food and beverage vendors, folk art vendors, local breweries and typically supports some cause[3] each year to which a portion of the proceeds are donated.[4] The event also supports the Waterfront Development Corporation and City of Louisville.


In 2015 local Louisville entrepreneur and producer Dennie Humphrey and co-founder Ashley Angel produced the very first Grateville Dead Tribute in honor of Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead on Garcia’s birthday August 1. After leaving Abbey Road on the River several weeks before when Ashley said, "Why isn't there a Grateful Dead on the River?" prompting Humphrey, who also co-founded the GonzoFest music festival at Waterfront Park and had experience putting the events together.[5]

Including talents like Tyrone Cotton, Hyryder, Hot Iron Skillet, Vessel, Born Cross-Eyed and the Louisville Merry Pranksters, the event became a success, drawing a large crowd of over 2,000 people its first year to the Brown Forman Amphitheater in Louisville’s scenic Waterfront Park despite a very small advertising campaign and little planning. From conception to opening day was only thirty days and the organizers didn't expect a large turnout. The event gained local notability and the founders have continued the event annually including the addition of "halfstep" shows consisting of a smaller show in the winter to promote and announce the summer festival dates.

The event returned in 2016,[6] 2017,[7][8] and again in 2018.[9] [10]In 2017 organizers included the addition of all-night camping for festival goers[4].


  1. ^ "Grateville Dead Official Website". Grateville Dead. Retrieved July 31, 2017.
  2. ^ Havens, Sara. "Move over Abbey Road … GrateVille Dead is the new tribute festival in town". Insider Louisville. Retrieved July 29, 2015.
  3. ^ "GRATEVILLE DEAD FESTIVAL!!". Strive 502. Jul 28, 2017.
  4. ^ a b Gibson, Kevin (July 26, 2017). "GrateVille Dead 2017 adds camping to the experience". Insider Louisville. Retrieved July 26, 2017.
  5. ^ Miller, John (3 Aug 2015). "THE GRATEVILLE DEAD COMES TO LOUISVILLE". Louisville Magazine.
  6. ^ Smith, Ethan. "GrateVille Dead 2016". Retrieved July 31, 2017.
  7. ^ "GrateVille Dead Music Festival 3rd Year". Grateful Web. 2017-05-21.
  8. ^ Puckett, Jeffrey Lee (2017-07-25). "GrateVille Dead festival leads Louisville's top 5 shows, July 27-Aug. 2". Courier-Journal. Retrieved 2019-01-31.
  9. ^ Alvey, Rebecca (2017-07-27). "Deadheads welcomed to the fourth annual GrateVille Dead music festival". Insider Louisville. Retrieved 2019-01-31.
  10. ^ Hussain, Zamirah. "Staffpicks: Grateville Dead 2018". LEO Weekly. Retrieved 2019-01-31.

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