Rock the Rapids returns to Fifth Third Ballpark


Thompson Square will be performing opening night at Rock the Rapids. Photo via

Concert organizers said Tuesday that tickets are still available for all three nights of Rock the Rapids, which kicks off tonight at Fifth Third Ballpark.

The three-day festival runs through Thursday, Aug. 22, and is presented by Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort.

Rock the Rapids 2013 will open with performances by country duo Thompson Square, with special guests Brett Eldredge and Drake White.

Rock bands Daughtry and Lifehouse are scheduled to perform on night two, and ZZ Top, with special guest Kenny Wayne Shepherd, will close the festival.

The shows on Wednesday and Thursday will likely sell out, said Dennis Baxter, Rock the Rapids event director.

“I think it is going to be three days of really good fun,” Baxter said.

22,000 fans

Baxter said that he is expecting an audience of approximately 22,000 over the three days. That number is larger than the crowd size generated by the festival in previous years.

This year, Rock the Rapids returns to its original venue at Fifth Third Ballpark, after two years operating downtown behind Van Andel Arena. The return seems to be well received by concertgoers.

“A place for Rock the Rapids”

“I would say, in the general sense, ticket sales are better this year than what we’ve experienced in the last couple of years,” Baxter said. “What it tells me is that the community does like this festival and does want to support it.

“We just have to continue to find what is going to be the best place for this thing to operate at and under what circumstances will it operate the best, but I think there is a place for Rock the Rapids in Grand Rapids, and it’s our job to make sure we put it in the right place,” added Baxter.

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