The Bright Spots of 2020

This year surely looked different for all of us. Although we did not gather in Waterfront Park, we found a way to carry on and make 2020 a year to remember. To our fans who danced in the streets, hopped on the Bandwagon, tuned in across the world, and spread the love with those who needed it most, thank you. We are so grateful for you.

LET’S BE REAL, IT WAS TOUGH

For the first time since 1988, we were not at the waterfront over July 4th weekend, celebrating and dancing to the blues. Canceling the festival in March was a rough start for 2020. It was heartbreaking. But because of you, the Waterfront Blues Festival carried on in an amazing, resilient way.

THE BANDWAGON BROUGHT THE BLUES

Inspired by our community’s selflessness during these challenging times, we took the festival on the road. The Blues Fest Bandwagon brought music to super fans, frontline heroes, veterans, a retirement community, and we even surprised a cancer-fighting fan. This was a Blues Fest we will never forget!

Watch the Bandwagon Recap

WE LISTENED TOGETHER AT HOME

Fans also tuned in all around the world for a walk down Waterfront Blues memory lane. We set up our lawn chairs, fired up the grill, and kept #BluesFestingTogether with rockin’ On Air and Broadcast programs. Want to relive that weekend? We’ve got you covered!

Blues Fest On Air – Day One on KBOO
Blues Fest On Air – Day Two on KBOO
Blues Fest Broadcast on KOIN

WE SHOWED UP FOR OUR COMMUNITY

We used our collective power to help those in need by raising money for Meals on Wheels People and MusiCares throughout Blues Fest 2020. Our fans also helped support the festival during these challenging times through our first-ever virtual merch store, and we shopped local, small businesses during the 12 Days of Blues Christmas giveaway.

Shop Waterfront Blues Merch

WE ENDED THE YEAR WITH SOME HOLIDAY CHEER

We ended 2020 with live music and holiday cheer. Thanks to the help of our Waterfront Blues Fest fans, we helped sell out a night of the Winter Wonderland drive-thru light show and supported our friends at the Sunshine Division. We gave away 12 days of amazing prizes to the best fans on the planet, and it was Christmas time in the city when our local Waterfront Blues artists popped up with live music at ten locations for the Polka Dot Downtown experience!

LOOKING AHEAD TO 2021 WITH BLUES-COLORED GLASSES

Although we still have a few uncertain months ahead of us, rest assured that we are working on several creative plans to ensure the music returns for the 2021 Waterfront Blues Festival. We will share our 2021 plans with you just as soon as it is safe to move forward.

Thank you for holding on to your tickets and passes, buying festival merchandise, and simply showing us love as our live music and festival industries weather this storm. Thank you for your sincere encouragement and camaraderie as we all work to keep this beloved community fixture a part of Portland’s rich cultural scene.

We remain hopeful for a healthy and prosperous New Year, one filled with a safe return of live music. As quickly as we all hope to put 2020 in the rearview mirror, we won’t soon forget the outpouring of support we’ve felt this year.

Thank you, Waterfront Blues Festival family – here’s to 2021! Brighter days are ahead.