Common Ground Seeks an 'Experience' in 14th Year

The Common Ground Festival in Lansing's Adado Riverfront Park plays host to nearly 70 musical acts on three stages. But Scott Keith wants more. He wants a destination.

"There's something going on every minute while you're down here," said Keith, Chair of the Board at Center Park Productions. "The festival experience is part of it, to have things beyond just a concert. [People] love taking part in other activities and experiencing things that they don't get to normally do on a regular basis."

That's why, more than ever before, Keith says there will be something for everyone.

A new stage for music will host local musicians, after parties and cooking demonstrations. A Color Run -- a 5k race where participants are covered in colored powder -- and a chance to fall three stories onto a giant airbag are among the new, diverse options.

Plus, the entrance has moved from a side street to a park bridge, which, in addition to providing a more scenic backdrop, helps make Common Ground a more memorable experience, Keith said.

"I think it gives a vibe to the festival itself," he said. "All these things kind of create a more artistic experience to the festival and I think it's going to get everyone excited."

More than 300 workers have been setting up for four days, in time for gates to open for general admission at 5:30 tomorrow.

"It takes a lot of motivated people and equipment and a lot of resources to get this built," said Tristyn Wright Meyer, vice president of operations. "We kind of keep on adding each year to the Common Ground Music Festival."

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