Best Music Festival (2010)

Free Press Summerfest

This year, Free Press Summerfest went from experiment to full-fledged event. Despite no favors from the weather — punishing heat and humidity both days; an hour-long Biblical downpour the second — thousands upon thousands of people packed Eleanor Tinsley Park for a festival that delivered a lot more than headliner The Flaming Lips' candy-coated sunshine psychedelia. Low ticket prices, including a VIP package affordable enough for ramen-eaters, plenty of food and water, and a booking philosophy that would be adventurous for even Coachella or Lollapalooza (we can't think of another festival that would welcome Houston noise-wreckers Rusted Shut with open arms, for example), added up to a musical experience that was both tourist-friendly and singularly Houston. Now facing a future in which its success may well force it to relocate outside Eleanor Tinsley, Summerfest has accomplished in two short years what many thought was impossible: It has put Houston firmly on the major music-festival map.


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >