Millvale Music Summer Picnic to bring community together in lieu of brew fest

Monday, July 29, 2019 | 12:01 AM


Millvale plans to keep the borough rocking after an estimated 7,000 to 10,000 people visited venues throughout town for the third-annual Millvale Music Festival in May, according to festival chairman Paul Bossung Jr.

Festival organizers are planning a free, all-ages Millvale Music Summer Picnic featuring music, food trucks and beer from 2 to 9 p.m. Aug. 10 at Millvale Riverfront Park.

Performers will include: The Bleepy Things, Bad Custer, Byron Nash, FUBAR, Macro Aggression and Shameless Hex.

“The music styles kind of vary. We’ve got bluegrass through heavy rock. There’s a little something for everyone,” Bossung said.

Rock band FUBAR won a Facebook poll to secure its spot at the show.

“We put a poll up and started with bands that did well and that we really liked as a group — those of us that run the fest — but then we kind of let it run. There were a handful of bands that got a lot of votes. We had a couple bands come out of nowhere,” Bossung said.

Nash will play music from his upcoming debut EP, in addition to remixes of his solos and Byron Nash and PLANB songs, performing as a duo with a drummer, rather than the original five-piece band lineup.

“My current sound is a guitar-driven, bluesy, funk-rock blend that incorporates loop pedals and effects. Imagine if you did a mash-up of Ed Sheeran, Jack White, The Black Keys and Gary Clark Jr. with a raw and visceral attack,” Nash said.

“It’s one stage, so you don’t have that constant bouncing around type of almost frantic feeling that the music festival has, which is great for people that want to see a bunch of bands, but is not as relaxing, which some people would enjoy more,” Bossung said.

The event will occur rain or shine, thanks to the protection offered by the park’s pavilion.

Bossung said the Millvale Music Festival hasn’t hosted a venue at the park because of potential pedestrian safety issues posed if the festival’s large crowds were to travel through the Route 28-East Ohio Street interchange. Bossung noted that the area is marked with pedestrian crossing signs.

For the past 12 years, the Millvale Community Development Corp. (MCDC) has booked the park the second August weekend for its brew fest fundraiser. The MCDC has chosen to discontinue the event.

Melissa Mason, MCDC secretary, said MCDC volunteers worked hard to set a precedent with one of the area’s first beer festivals.

“As a result, Millvale was put on the map as a prime location for breweries such as Grist House (Craft Brewery) and Strange Roots (Experimental Ales),” she said.

“There are now several similarly run brew festivals in the area, again pointing out the standard that was set and the success of the Millvale Brew Fest,” she continued. “Being that it is no longer an entity unique to the community of Millvale, it was decided to step away from hosting the festival this year and instead put our efforts into other projects that will assist in the growth and development of Millvale and the members of our community.”

As a Millvale Music Festival committee member, she looks forward to the picnic and festival’s future.

The music festival is an MCDC subcommittee, Bossung said.

Food trucks Hoshi, Tango, Lone Wolf Grill and Ash & Kris Kitchen will serve diners. Victory Brewing, Iron City Beer and Troegs Independent Brewing will offer beer as the festival’s title sponsors, in partnership with Vecenie Distributing Co.

Proceeds from beer sales and a 50/50 will pay the picnic’s performers and raise funds toward next year’s festival.