GO Fest News

Blues Music, Festival Favorites, and New Features at the 2022 Anthem GO Outside Festival

The Anthem GO Outside Festival, known locally as GO Fest, returns to downtown Roanoke October 14-16 with inspiring blues music, jaw-dropping outdoor films, and a plethora of outdoor activities. The three-day outdoor sports festival will host American blues, funk, and soul artist Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears for Saturday night’s Project Outside benefit concert. Described as a “vital and distinctly American voice,” Black Joe Lewis is a stone-cold original who has honed his “gut bucket blues” on stages with Sharon Jones, Charles Bradley, Cedric Burnside and Lightnin Malcolm. Opening the show is award-winning vocalist Shemekia Copeland, who possesses one of the most instantly recognizable and deeply soulful roots music voices of our time.  

The festival footprint surrounds Elmwood Park, using the parts of Franklin Road and Jefferson Street adjacent to the park. That footprint will be filled with favorite events such as the Banff Mountain Film Festival, lumberjack and BMX stunt shows, a second music stage, two beer gardens, outdoor exhibitors, gear demos, and more to be announced. GO Fest organizers are also happy to offer two new commemorative reusable pint cups, getting back to the festival’s roots as a force for sustainability.

GO Fest is excited to announce new elements of the festival that underline a focus on creating space in the outdoors that is welcoming to all. To that end, GO Fest debuts a partnership with the Humble Hustle Co. as well as the launch of the new Campfire Stage as a place for conversation and storytelling. The Humble Hustle Co. is bringing its popular Outdoor Culture Event Series to the festival; this series invites folks of all backgrounds to hear Black outdoor enthusiasts speak at the Campfire Stage as well as participate in outdoor cooking, birding, geology, and fishing activities. The Campfire Stage lineup also features a live recording of the Super Carlin Bros Popcorn Culture podcast and a Hoot & Holler storytelling event, akin to The Moth on the Radio Hour, featuring stories on the theme of Mother Nature.

The festival’s expansion of live entertainment opportunities is thanks in part to a grant from the Virginia Tourism Corporation awarded to organizing partner Play Roanoke. The purpose of the $20,000 award is to ensure the festival is free to attend and to amplify the significant and positive economic impact GO Fest brings to Roanoke. Tickets for Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears are on sale now through the Berglund Center box office and online. To stay up-to-date on the activities, shows, demos, and more at this year’s Anthem GO Outside Festival, follow on social media @RoanokeGOFest or visit roanokegofest.com.

ABOUT THE ANTHEM GO OUTSIDE FESTIVAL: The Anthem GO Outside Festival is a free annual event that encourages healthy outdoor recreation. Organized through a partnership between the City of Roanoke’s Department of Parks and Recreation and the Roanoke Outside Foundation, the three-day event has evolved into one of the nation’s premier outdoor festivals since 2011. Taking place in mid-October annually, the festival features over 100 family-friendly activities, pro athlete demos, races, craft beer, camping, and live music. Learn more at www.roanokegofest.com 

ABOUT PROJECT OUTSIDE: Project Outside is a partnership between the Roanoke Outside Foundation and local land managers (i.e. local governments, ATC, NPS, etc.) of identified regional outdoor assets. Project Outside funds will be used to fill maintenance funding gaps in projects or initiatives and pool resources to tackle large-scale outdoor infrastructure projects. Project Outside is designed to help ensure that outdoor assets remain in top condition for residents and visitors. Since its creation in 2020, Project Outside has awarded $150,000 to 24 different regional projects that benefit the outdoor community. Learn more at https://www.roanokeoutside.com/project-outside 


Celebrating 50 years of bringing the world’s best music to Southwest Virginia, Berglund Center is a full-service entertainment facility located in the heart of Virginia’s Blue Ridge.  Endeavoring to provide an unparalleled live experience, Berglund Center takes pride in furnishing exceptional customer service while entertaining audiences of all ages. Visit us at www.BerglundCenter.live for more information

How to Use the GO Fest Schedule (Favorites Tab)

Our new website has a pretty cool feature. You can select your favorite events and then revisit them on the same device and they will be saved under the “favorites” tab for up to three months. You can also download or print your favorites. That way you don’t miss anything!

Watch the video to learn how to use the “favorites” tab to build out a custom schedule, or if you’re already onsite you can visit the “now” tab to see what’s happening right at that moment.

GO Fest 2021 Road Closures

GO Fest is coming to downtown Roanoke! The following parking changes and street closures will result due to this event. Please feel free to reach out to Downtown Roanoke Inc. with any questions and we look forward to a busy and exciting weekend in downtown Roanoke.

GO Fest –  Friday, Saturday, Sunday on October 15, 16, and 17, 2021 10:00 am – 8:00 pm 

No Parking Thursday 10/14 after 3 PM through Sunday at 8 PM

  • Jefferson St southbound parking lane from Bullitt Ave to Reserve Ave.
  • Reserve Ave westbound parking lane from Jefferson to Riverside Circle 

No Parking Thursday 10/14 after 6 PM through Sunday at 8 PM 

  • Market St. – between Church Ave and Cambell Ave 
  • Kirk Ave – between Market St and Williamson Rd 
  • Campbell Ave – between Parking Garage Entrance and Williamson Rd  
  • Wall St. – between Campbell Ave and Salem Ave 
  • Market St – between Campbell Ave and Salem Ave 
  • Salem Ave – between Market St and the Parking Lot 
  • Williamson – between Bullitt Ave and Elm Ave
  • Jefferson St – between Bullitt and Day Ave
  • Franklin Rd – between Jefferson St and Williamson Rd 

The following streets will close on 6 pm Thursday, October 14, 2021 and remain closed until 8 pm Sunday, October 17, 2021 

  • Wall Street – between Salem and Campbell Ave
  • Market Street – between Salem and Campbell and Campbell and Church Ave
  • Kirk Ave will become two-way and open to thru traffic and parking lot traffic only 
  • Franklin Road – between Jefferson St and Williamson Rd

The following streets will close on 8pm Thursday, October 14th, 2021 and remain closed until 8pm Sunday, October 17, 2021 

  • Campbell Ave from Center in the Square Parking Garage to Williamson Road.

Parking Downtown

If you’re worried about parking downtown – don’t be! One of the benefits of moving the event downtown is there are several large parking garages in downtown Roanoke that will be available. There are a few free options and some paid options that may be more convenient for those willing to fork over the cash (we do not receive any of this money).

You can view downtown parking that is always available on www.downtownroanoke.org.

GO Fest Brings Live Music and Films to Elmwood

Annual, outdoors festival brings adventure films and live music to the newly, relocated Downtown Roanoke event – October 15-17

ROANOKE, VA (September 20, 2021) – The annual Anthem Go Outside Festival will be rocking out Elmwood Amphitheater at this year’s downtown Roanoke event, featuring headliner Vintage Trouble on the Haley Toyota stage – Saturday, October 16.

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GO Fest Moves Downtown

Annual outdoors festival will span downtown from Elmwood Park to the Market Building

ROANOKE, VA (August 3, 2021) – The Anthem Go Outside Festival (GO Fest) is making a big move into downtown Roanoke for its tenth anniversary to be held October 15-17, 2021. Roanoke’s signature outdoor event will span from Elmwood Park all the way to the City Market Building, with in between streets closed for vendors, stunt shows, activities, beer gardens, live music and more.

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Concert FAQs

2020 Benefit Concert FAQs

Pre-Arrival Information for Concert: Extremely important information everyone in your pod must be aware of (and do) in order to get in. Seriously…read it.

What are your COVID policies and safety protocol? See our full policy here. Those refusing to adhere to the mask requirement and safety protocols may be asked to leave.

Can I bring a pop-up tent? No tents or umbrellas allowed to ensure everyone has a good view.

Can you have more than six people in a pod? No. All pods will be strictly limited to the six original people you arrive with. When you purchase a pod you will be sent six unique scan codes and those will be the only six people allowed inside the concert venue. Once in your pod you will have color-coded wristbands for just the people in your pod. No pod co-mingling will be allowed.

When can we arrive? By now person who purchased the pod will have received an email with instructions (please share this with your entire party pod). You can also read the contents of that email here. You will be assigned an arrival time. Please ensure your entire group arrives at that time. This ensures we don’t have long lines and are able to maintain social distancing. If your group or a few members cannot arrive at your scheduled time please do your best to consolidate your group into smaller groups and arrive when you can.

We ask that you arrive with your entire party pod. At your assigned arrival time approach the venue as a group. Please distance from other parties and have your masks on. At check-in you will receive your wristbands, instructions, and any items you pre-purchased or that came with your pod level. An usher will escort you to your pod.

Can I bring chairs and blankets? Yes, you may bring camping chairs and blankets to sit in your pod. We recommend a blanket to sit on and a blanket for warmth.

Can I bring my own alcohol? No outside alcohol will be allowed. All beer will be served in cans and delivered to your pod. Beer served onsite will be a variety Deschutes canned beer. Cider and wine in cans will also be available. All onsite sales will be credit card only through an app.

How do I buy beer tokens? If you purchased beer tokens through the ticketing portal, they will be given to you at check-in with your packet and swag items. If you need more onsite, you will be able to buy them through the Odeko App (GO Fest Shop) and they will be delivered to your pod (instructions will be in your arrival/check in packet).

Is there an age restriction? Yes, this concert is for ages 18+ only due to explicit content.

Where should we park? Party pods are required to arrive and check-in together, so we recommend that you carpool or use a ride share. Parking is available on a first come first serve basis in the new River’s Edge North parking lot and Carilion parking lots and garage located off Reserve Ave.

Can we bring our own food? No outside food will be allowed either. Attendees can order from food trucks onsite using the Odeko app (download prior to arrival for ease) and it will be delivered by volunteers to your pod. Brush up on details here ahead of time, they will also be included with your arrival packet. VERY IMPORTANT – when ordering anything through the Odeko App you MUST replace your name with your POD #…this is the only way we know where to deliver your order.

Can I smoke or vape? No. This is a smoke- and tobacco free event.

What is your bag policy? – No large bags or coolers will be allowed into the event. You may have a small personal bag, chairs and blankets. All bags are subject to search.

Are dogs allowed? No dogs at the benefit concerts. We will be working very hard to keep everyone safe and in their pods at all times (except when using the bathroom) so it just makes it too complicated to add dogs to the mix.

Can I leave and Come Back? No. There is no re-entry

Andy Frasco Returns to GO Fest for Benefit Concert

andy frasco roanoke

The Anthem Go Outside Festival’s 2020 pivot toward socially-distanced, smaller scale events includes two concerts on Friday, Oct. 16 and Saturday, Oct. 17 at Maher Field (River’s Edge) in downtown Roanoke. Andy Frasco & The U.N., who performed at GO Fest in 2019 and has been an internet sensation with streaming concerts during COVID-19, will headline the double-feature.

Proceeds from these ticketed concerts will benefit Project Outside, with a goal of raising $100,000 for the Roanoke Region’s outdoor assets, maintenance and small businesses.

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GO Fest Pivots in 2020 with Small Events


ROANOKE, VA (Aug. 26, 2020) – The Anthem Roanoke GO Outside Festival (GO Fest) isn’t happening in the traditional sense. The event, which is put on by the Roanoke Outside Foundation and Roanoke Parks and Recreation, will not happen in person due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but you can show your outdoor community spirit in other ways.

GO Fest will pivot from a large outdoor festival to a series of smaller, socially distanced events that still contribute to the Roanoke Region’s outdoor community.

Continue reading “GO Fest Pivots in 2020 with Small Events”