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Hills alive is a free outdoor Christian music festival held on the third weekend of July every year, at memorial park in Rapid City, South Dakota. It is one of only two Christian Festival Association festivals that are held free of charge, the other being LifeLight Festival in Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Hills alive started up in 1985, at heart ranch, just outside of rapid city. its original mission was to introduce artists to the Listener base of the KSLT radio station, and provide a positive uplifting environment that the family can enjoy. In the festivals second year, they added another day, making it a two day festival, with local talent. the festival was held at heart ranch until 1988 when it moved the Spearfish city park in Spearfish, South Dakota. The festival was held in Spearfish park from 1988 until 1997. as the listener base to the radio station grew, the decision was made to move the festival to a larger, more centralized location. the chose memorial park in Rapid City, South Dakota where the festival has been held sense. in 2002, the festival was not held, due to a conflict with the City of Rapid city, that instated that they could not fence off memorial park and block the flow of the city bike path. That year, Life light communications, the organizers of LifeLight Festival held LifeLight West, in memorial park, and in the progress showed the organizers of hills alive that a Free festival can be done, and how to do it. in turn, from 2003, Hills alive has been held for Free every year since, and in turn has grown to one of the nations larger festivals.
Free For All
with a budget of nearly $250,000, the hills alive festival exists as a non-profit event, making up its income needed to pay for the event from business partners, who in turn have there logo advertised on the official posters, in the program, and on the main stage video screen between artists. they can also have booth space on the festival grounds. hills alive makes up the rest of its shortfalls from donations prior to the festival, offerings during the festival, and donation barrels placed through out the grounds. many of the festivals donations come in the form of in kind donations, where instead of donating a monitory form of cash, the donations can be in the form of equipment or services for the festival. a festival of this magnitude can have full event ticket costs of up to $120 per person. thanks to all of this, the festival is held free of charge.