Music Happenings: ACL 2013 May Move to Two Weekends

C3 Presents, the promoters behind Austin City Limits, have asked Austin City officials to consider a request to expand the Austin City Limits Music festival into two weekends next year instead of just one.

According to the Austin American Statesman, C3 Presents cofounder Charlie Jones would like to add an additional weekend to the popular festival to meet increasing demand. In exchange, the company would significantly increase yearly donations to improve Austin parks, including and especially Auditorium Shores, home to many C3 events such as the Austin Food & Wine Foundation. In addition to dollars donated, C3 will cover costs associated with the extra weekend, including security and clean up crews.

Should the City agree, 2013’s ACL Festival is tentatively scheduled for October 4-6 and October 11-13. Austin City Limits isn’t the only festival to make the leap from one to two weekends; California’s annual Coachella Valley Music and Art Festival made a similar switch this year.  Unlike other two weekend festivals, such as New Orleans’ famed Jazz Fest, which feature two unique line-ups, Coachella featured the same line-up and artist for both weekends. No word on which route ACL will choose to take, but if I were a betting woman, I would guess the latter. If this is the case, it will be interesting to see if the big moments from weekend 1 can have the same impact on weekend 2 or if the buzz and loss of surprise will have an effect.

As with any major event taking place in Austin, traffic woes are often a main concern, and ACL is no different. Typically, the festival is deliberately scheduled to avoid coinciding with Texas Football for this and other reasons, including hotels and accommodations.  No official word on the Longhorn schedule just yet, but they are scheduled to for the annual Red River Shootout in Dallas during the first proposed weekend.  

Along with C3’s personal commitment to increase funds to improve city parks, adding a second weekend could mean big dollars for the local economy. According to the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau, ACL generates upwards of $27 million annually, and this number would only increase with another weekend.  While an extra weekend will certainly come with a few drawbacks, the benefits appear to outweigh the costs in this case.

What do you think?



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