After taking a year off, WMMS-FM morning show "Rover's Morning Glory" is bringing its popular all-day festival back to Lorain County.
RoverFest X takes place July 21 at Black River Landing in Lorain. Musical acts include Shinedown, Machine Gun Kelly, Lil Jon, Big Boi, All That Remains and Red Sun Rising. Hosting the affair will be comedian Bert Kreischer.
"It's probably the best lineup we've had in 10 years of doing RoverFest," said Rover (real name Shane French), who has been on the Cleveland airwaves since 2003. "Last year, we didn't do it. It boiled down to scheduling, but people really love the event.
"We started 11 years ago - this is our 10th one we've done - on a small scale and just grew and grew. It's really become kind of the go-to festival in the area for the summer. People just really enjoy coming out, so I would say we had some unfinished business to do."
RoverFest X also includes the Miss Morning Glory contest and guest appearances by Rover and his on-air cohorts Duji (real name Susan Cantanese) and Dominic Dieter. Also scheduled are fireworks by American Fireworks.
"We're really excited to bring the event back to Lorain and Black River Landing," Lorain Port Authority Executive Director Thomas Brown said. "We look forward to helping create a successful event and look forward to our Lorain businesses being able to offer many great goods and services for the thousands of guests to our city."
In terms of economic impact for downtown Lorain, RoverFest in the past has attracted roughly 20,000 people to the area. Rover said that's what he's expecting this year.
"It's a very picturesque venue," said Rover, whose radio show "Rover's Morning Glory" is heard in 12 markets. "The location right on the river is great for everyone. You get a nice cool breeze, and it's one of only a handful of places in the area that can accommodate such a large crowd."
Now that RoverFest is back, does that mean it'll once again become an annual affair?
"Talk me to on July 22," Rover laughed. "Usually these take a lot out of you. The next two months will be nonstop work. I would like to keep doing them, but there may be burnout afterward. We'll see."
Lorain Mayor Chase Ritenauer said the city is happy to have the concert returning this year after taking last year off and to have the crowds return to downtown Lorain.
"I think it shows how much we've grown since they came to Lorain the first time," he said. "There's been a lot of investment to downtown with the hotel project coming up, the streetscape project and local residents and developers helping to transform the area. It's proof that it's really turning into an entertainment district."
Ritenauer said while he knows the concert isn't everyone's ideal choice of entertainment, it's good to know the entertainment aspect of downtown Lorain is thriving.
"It signifies that tip of that hat," he said.
Contact John Benson at firstname.lastname@example.org.