Despite the rain and muggy weather, about 5,000 people were downtown to hear the sounds of bands performing at the Student Government Association’s 10th Annual Eaglepalooza Friday night.
According to Eaglepalooza Director Christian Myrick, those in attendance were able to enjoy live music and food from local vendors and a beer garden provided by Skylight Lounge.
Originally, DJ Bionics, Mack Wilds, The Adam Doleac Band, Rosco Bandana and NEEDTOBREATHE were slated to perform this year. However, Mack Wilds and The Adam Doleac Band ended up not playing.
Myrick said the circumstances were out of SGA’s control.
“Because the show was delayed, some tough decisions had to be made in regards to the show lineup,” he said. “The City of Hattiesburg is so gracious to allow us to host the event downtown, but there is an 11:00 curfew in place and the show had to be done by that time.”
“Unfortunately, two artists had to be cut because there simply wasn’t enough time,” he added. “… As much as I would have loved for those artists to perform, I tried my best, but it simply wouldn’t have worked.”
Alexis Tymkiw, a sophomore marketing major, said SGA could have communicated better with the audience.
“It would’ve been nice to know what was going on,” Tymkiw said. “People could’ve left halfway through DJ Bionics thinking they had time to go eat or grab coffee before NEEDTOBREATHE, but it turns out, they really didn’t.”
“Overall, though, I really had a great time at Eaglepalooza,” she added. “I had a great spot, NEEDTOBREATHE is one of my favorite bands, and the rain wasn’t really an issue at all.”
Kristy Barber, a junior speech pathology major, said this was her first time to attend Eaglepalooza, and she enjoyed the event.
“Rosco Bandana is one of my favorite local bands and I loved seeing them perform,” she said. “They do an awesome job every time.”
Brooke Herndon, a freshman nursing major, said the rain actually enhanced NEEDTOBREATHE’s performance.
“NEEDTOBREATHE is one of my favorite bands and it was so cool to see them perform ‘Washed by the Water’ in the rain,” Herndon said. “It was my first Eaglepalooza and it will definitely be one of the most memorable nights of my life.”
Many people decided to stay indoors because of the yucky weather, but there was still a remarkable turnout at Eaglepalooza.
“Honestly I was expecting the rain to affect the crowd but I believe the turnout was great,” Myrick said. “Surprisingly the crowd was incredible and really excited and they cheered and sang along through the rain and that is what it’s really about – entertaining the people.”
Myrick said he feels Eaglepalooza was an overall success.
“You always have to be prepared for anything that could go wrong with these type of events,” he said. “Rain is always the biggest fear, but it didn’t stop our event or the crowd coming out to enjoy it. Ultimately, our artists had a great time and our crowd enjoyed themselves. That’s all that matters.”
Eaglepalooza Assistant Director Jeffrey George agreed.
“Without a doubt I think it was a success,” George said. “I have heard nothing but great things from those that attended. From the volunteers to the crowd, everyone had a great time despite a little rain.”
“Our crowd always turns out big and I believe this year was no different,” he added. “The artists had nothing but great things to say about the crowd so I’d definitely call that a success.”
“As the director for Eaglepalooza this year, I want to thank everyone who came out and supported us,” Myrick said. “I’m not sure many people understand the preparation and hardwork that is put into this event, so it’s an understatement for me to say ‘thank you’ for supporting us.”
For more information about Eaglepalooza, visit southernmisssga.org.