The resounding success of the inaugural Uptown Get Down music festival was shared throughout the Richland shopping center — bringing over $100,000 to the strip in a single day, according to festival organizer Caleb Brown.
In fact, the Emerald of Siam, approaching its 40th anniversary, reported having the best single day of sales ever.
Because of this success, the first major music festival to come to Tri-Cities is doubling in size for its second year. It’s growing so much, in fact, the organization became an official business, rebranding to reflect the growth, now Tri Town Get Down, LLC.
In 2023, the event was through local company Unleashed Entertainment, with several sponsors. The 2024 festival is a standalone organization, owned by Unleashed and FUSE, with main sponsor the Emerald of Siam.
Tri-Cities music festival rebrands, expands
Tri Town Get Down will be bigger and better than its predecessor, bringing around 100 artists to 10 stages across Richland. From June 7 to 9, attendees will once again be able to make their own experience, bouncing from venue to venue, performer to performer.
Interspersed throughout the festival will be mini-festivals, called fusions, representing what makes Tri-Cities Tri-Cities, according to Brown. He doesn’t run the fusions, as his connection and expertise is in music. Instead, other organizers with connections to the five themes are orchestrating the mini-events. These are:
Some fusions will be free to enter, keeping the goal from 2023’s festival to stay accessible to all.
“The goal is to connect all ages, races, genders, socioeconomic status… all while bringing people from beyond [Tri-Cities] to the music festival,” Brown said in an exclusive interview with the Tri-City Herald.
The organizer elaborated that the Get Down organization is prioritizing four goals:
Empower local artists and businesses
Sustainable growth refers to the continued expansion of the Get Down festival, from a music festival to “The music festival,” according to Brown.
The growth from year one to two is likely a good sign. As the years go on, organizers hope to expand the festival throughout Tri-Cities, using bigger venues, adding more fusions and representing more locals.
“I personally don’t plan on stopping until it’s the biggest festival in the state,” Brown said. He posited he might pass off the responsibility once the festival is bigger than anything at the Gorge Amphitheatre.
Tri Town Get Down fusions
While the music festival is the driving factor of Tri Town Get Down, the event was always meant to showcase the potential in Tri-Cities. By drawing folks from out of town to the numerous venues here, Brown hopes to show off his hometown even more. A new element at Get Down, the fusions are supplemental, but will show even more of what’s in Tri-Cities.
“Each fusion will showcase [Tri-Cities] in its own right,” Brown said. Meant to represent home, each fusion celebrates something we have an abundance of here in the Tri-Cities.
The Farmers Fusion will be like a giant farmers market, highlighting the vast array of produce grown in Eastern Washington.
The Latin Fusion will showcase the prevalent culture in Tri-Cities. This fusion is entirely Chicano-led, bringing food, vendors and representations of Chicano culture to the festival.
The STEM Fusion will be like an expanded science fair, with information and demonstrations from the numerous resources and organizations in the area.
The Food Fusion will be interspersed throughout the festival venues, allowing attendees to try dishes from local vendors, using local ingredients.
The Ferment Fusion features local wineries and breweries, showcasing the stellar grapes and hops of the region. This will operate as a beer garden for attendees 21 and up.
Differences at Tri Town Get Down?
It isn’t just the physical space that’s growing in 2024, either. Brown says the artists booked thus far are bigger stars than last year’s acts, one boasting a diamond record and nearing their way into the Spotify Billions Club. Together, the headliners have over 10 million monthly listeners on Spotify.
To accommodate this growth, the main stage for year two will be at the Jon Dam Plaza, with other venues in the Uptown Shopping Center and Park Way. The organizer called it a “venue hopper with a main stage.”
With such growth comes an increase in ticket prices, but don’t worry, they will still be affordable, Brown says. While more expensive than last year, there is going to be twice as much entertainment, so it’s still definitely a bang for your buck.
Early bird tickets just went on sale and offer the best deal for the festival. VIP packages and other tiered ticket options will be available in the beginning of 2024, when lineup and headliner information will be released.
The organization has also reopened its submissions for artists, vendors and sponsors. If interested, apply online.
Each year the festival mascot will change to another animal native to this region. The fan-favorite bear mascot for 2023 will be replaced with a snake in 2024.
Get Down Presents events
While June 2024 might feel like a long ways away, the company has organized several events leading up to the music festival in order to garner hype. These events, called “Get Down Presents” will look ahead to the festival with smaller local shows.
The first Get Down Presents event is Spooky Island II, featuring local rappers like Karma Knows. Kid Lennon is also on the lineup, an homage to the 2023 Uptown Get Down, where Kid Lennon performed just before headliner Afroman. The show will be in the Uptown Theatre October 27, with tickets for $20.
Another Get Down Presents event will be held around New Year’s, celebrating the halfway point to the music festival.