Virgin Mobile Festival to return for 4th year
Dates, location, lineup for concert not yet set
By Sam Sessa | firstname.lastname@example.org
5:54 PM EDT, April 3, 2009
Organizers confirmed Friday that the Virgin Mobile Festival will be back for a fourth year, but it's still unclear whether the huge concert will return to Baltimore's Pimlico Race Course.
"Nothing in life is definite," said Jayne Wallace, director of corporate communications for Virgin Mobile. "But for all intents and purposes, we fully expect to hold another festival. We have some exciting ideas we're looking at."
Wallace said the festival's dates, location and lineup are still in negotiations.
For the past three years, the festival has been held at the racetrack. But with Pimlico's owner, Magna Entertainment, in bankruptcy proceedings, the festival could be forced to find another home, possibly outside of Baltimore and even the region.
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Metromix coverage: 2008 Virgin Fest Organizers have waited longer than normal to reveal any details about the festival. Last year, they locked in dates for the two-day event by February. By now, most of the major summer music festivals, such as Bonnaroo and Coachella, have already announced their lineups.
"It's starting to get late," said Gary Bongiovanni, editor of the music industry trade magazine Pollstar. "If there aren't moves already being made, you couldn't start from scratch and put a festival together today. ... This may be the year they take off."
This would be the fourth year in the U.S. for the Virgin Mobile Festival. More than 60,000 attended last year's festival, which spanned two days and featured headliners Kanye West, the Foo Fighters, Jack Johnson and Nine Inch Nails.
Though it may provide the most sprawling festival setting, Pimlico isn't the only local option for the Virgin Mobile Festival. Merriweather Post Pavilion, which is also booked by festival promoter Seth Hurwitz, is another possibility. It currently hosts the annual Vans Warped Tour, which features dozens of bands on multiple stages.
But it's unlikely that the Virgin Mobile Festival would mirror the African-American Heritage Festival and set up in the parking lots surrounding M&T Bank Stadium and Orioles Park at Camden Yards. Ravens PR director Kevin Byrne said that the football stadium is rarely available for outside events in August — especially a weekend-long festival — because of exhibition games.