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That's music to the ears of Willems, but all that positivity doesn't mean there aren't issues to be addressed, he said. He and his team Roshe Run Black And White Fade
Willems, co founder Cory Chisel and their Mile of Music team are contemplating an expansion of the 2 year old downtown Appleton festival that would include adding a fifth day or possibly spreading the festival over two August weekends.
"Two opposite opinions," Willems said. "The answer is probably somewhere in between."Willems is placing the estimated attendance over the four days at between 35,000 and 45,000, slightly higher than his initial estimate last weekend. The peak days were Friday and Saturday, when an estimated 12,000 to 15,000 patrons attended.
will be soliciting feedback in the coming days from those who plunked down $150 for VIP tickets, as well as from the venue owners and sponsors.
Willems said he got two pieces of unsolicited advice when he attended the closing concert of the four day festival last Sunday. First, a local event coordinator pulled him aside and warned him not to get too big too fast.
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the patio at Fox River House during the Mile of Music festival last weekend in downtown Appleton. Fox River House owner Patti Coenen said attendance through the weekend exceeded expectations.
vintage section with eclectic stuff," she said. "It was my goal to get that crowd in the shop."
Among the things to be addressed is the VIP pass and what it did and didn't do for those who purchased it. It got them into two VIP only shows but it didn't get them into bars that had already reached capacity.
The band Earl Burrows performs on Roshe Run Black And White Leopard
how fast for Mile of Music
"My sales from last year to this year tripled or quadrupled," she said. "It was fabulous."
"I had Robert Ellis telling me, 'This is your chance, this is your time. . The festivals that are done well happen very rarely. You have Nike Roshe Run Pink And Blue a chance to do something here really special and you have to go for it. You have to go while the momentum is going."
"Those were her words of caution," he said.
Then he went backstage and struck up a conversation with Robert Ellis, a rising star out of Nashville who was part of the tag team finale concert and who was urging Willems to grow the festival even bigger.
"It was beyond our expectations again," she said. "It was absolutely elevated compared to last year."
It wasn't just the music venues that were seeing benefits. Monika Austin, owner of Beatnik Betty's Resale Butik, made a concerted effort to lure in festival patrons and visiting musicians with discounts and window displays in her College Avenue store.
Some venues drew bigger crowds than others, much of it depending on the draw of the band.
"We know venues handled the VIP process differently," Willems said of VIP pass holders being turned away at packed venues. "We were worried about that and that's how it played out. But I know our VIPs understand that this is a work in progress. We're painting the picture as we go through it. We will make it better and make it more workable for everyone."
"Some said they were hoping for a little more," Stephany said. "Others were just blown away by their crowds."
"Hopefully by the end of September we'll have a really good game plan for where we go from here," co founder Dave Willems said.
There were about 1,300 patrons with VIP passes, although only about 600 actually purchased them. The others were passes provided to festival sponsors.
And therein lies the dilemma for Willems and Chisel.
Feedback from downtown businesses has been overwhelmingly enthusiastic, said Jennifer Stephany, executive director of Appleton Downtown Inc., an advocacy organization for the city's downtown district.
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