Cleveland’s Mourning (A) Blkstar, who will perform at the Union’s 22nd Blackoutfest on Saturday, July 28. (Submitted)

Blackoutfest XXII Returns to The Union July 26-28

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Kicking off Thursday, July 26, Blackoutfest XXII, The Union’s annual birthday party celebration will bring a number of nationally recognized rock acts into Athens for three nights of diverse rock ‘n’ roll fun.

“(Blackoutfest) started simply as a birthday party show for a few union employees who had April birthdays and played in bands. Those three bands were Geraldine, Appalachian Death Ride, and Pimpy Accelerator,” said Scott Winland of Blackout Booking and The Union. “It continued as a one-night-only celebration like that for a few years. After I started the booking agency, Blackout Booking, it eventually evolved into a three-night event, showcasing many of the bands I was booking tours for at the time, and others we loved.”
Some of the acts performing at the fest this year are Columbus’ EYE, L.A.-based Wand, Detroit’s aptly named Detroit Cobras, Athens’ own Slackluster, Slut Castle and Blue Moth, regional favorites The D-Rays, Cleveland’s Mourning (A) BLKstar and Archie and the Bunkers, California’s Greg Ashley Band, Yellow Springs’ Speaking Suns, and more.
“I think it is kinda special to have so many awesome acts from all over come into town for a 22-year-old rock’n’roll party in a small club,” said Winland. “It might just be the oldest fest in Athens at this point, which is pretty crazy considering its beginnings as a fun little rock’n’roll birthday party with co-workers and friends. I guess in a way it still feels like that. The biggest highlight each year is still hanging out with old friends listening to music we love.”
Doors open 7 p.m. Thursday, July 26 and 6 p.m. on Friday, July 27 and Saturday, July 28. Weekend passes are available for $35 at this link, and nightly admission is $8 at the door for Thursday; $20 at the door or through this link for Friday; $20 at the door or through this link for Saturday. Check out the full line-up schedule below.

Thursday (upstairs opens at 7 p.m.)
Tracy Duncan art show (downstairs) 6 p.m.!
Speaking Suns
Ma Holos
Mobile Home
Penny Wishes
Blue Moth
Slut Castle

Friday (upstairs opens at 6 p.m.)
Detroit Cobras
Archie & The Bunkers
Counterfeit Madison
The Molice
The D-Rays
Umman Manda

Saturday (upstairs opens at 6 p.m.)
Mourning (A) BLKSTAR
Greg Ashley Band
Bloody Show

Plus the Hongo Gonzo Light Show!
Special guest MC, Touchstone The Tramp!
Special guest DJs Vivi & The Inspektor
and lots more to be announced (stay tuned)!