Borderland Festival 2019 lineup includes Mavis Staples, Shakey Graves

Apr 4, 2019

Borderland Music and Arts Festival is returning to Knox Farm State Park September 21 and 22. Wednesday they announced their lineup and hope to triple attendance from year one heading in to year two.


Credit Borderland

Borderland drew around 6,000 people last year for their two-day festival. They are ambitiously aiming to draw over 20,000 this year and have a lineup they think can help make that happen. Gov't Mule, Shakey Graves, and others like Rock Hall and Blues Hall of Fame legend Mavis Staples.

Festival co-founder Jennifer Brazill said the diversity of the lineup is something that’s helped attract musicians just as well as last year’s audience.

“They’re like, ‘Thank you for bringing us to Buffalo.’ We had such a good reputation last year about the festival. So the word has already gotten around. People are so excited about this property it’s really special,” said Brazill.

Fellow co-founder John Cimperman said it helps they have large support from the local community.

“Jennifer and I are both from East Aurora.  We’re both from the Buffalo region. So we live here. We work here and former those local partnerships is critical. Because when the festival doe leave, we’re still here. And we need to take care of our backyard,” Cimperman said.

Music lineup at this years Borderland Festival
Credit Nick Lippa / WBFO

One market Cimperman hopes to tap in to is Canada.

“I think the ‘Sheepdogs’ are going to help. I think the reputation of last year is going to help,” he said. “Southern Ontario is a big market for us to pull from. Northeast Ohio as well as Downstate New York.”

Town of Aurora Supervisor James Bach says the festival was so well-organized last year, he’s confident things will run smoothly if 20,000 people show up.

“It can be intimidating, but the organization is, they’re pretty organized and we’re helping them out with some parking,” Bach said. “That’s a pretty aggressive number, but as long as they do the proper security and proper parking and traffic, I welcome it.”

Bach added the locales are all on board after last year.

“I didn’t hear any negatives at all. And I’d be the first one to hear them,” he laughed, “so it was a very well-run event.”

Local eateries and businesses in the town stands to greatly benefit from an event this large.

“Even if they are not attended to that day, people see what we have and they come back. So I think ultimately, it shows us off a little bit,” said Bach.

Brazil said for parking and transportation concerns, they will have shuttles and will be partnering with Lyft.

“As we get closer to the festival and we see how many tickets we’ve sold and we know how many people are coming, we’ll make sure to supplement everything around that,” she said. “We’ll increase our staffing, we’ll increase our shuttles, and we’ll increase our parking. We’ll be really conscientious and aware of what we’re creating as far as impact on the community and making sure fans have a good user experience.”

In all, the festival will include craft beer vendors, artisan exhibits, 3 stages with live music, and over 20 bands.

Festival co-founder John Cimperman
Credit Nick Lippa / WBFO

“We don’t want the festival to be too big because we love the boutique nature of it and the real personal touch,” said Cimperman, “but this year we do expect to grow and we look forward to everyone coming on out.”

Tickets go on sale Friday.