An event of ‘epic’ proportions is coming to Turlock at the end of this month, bringing 17 Christian bands and two speakers to an estimated 12,000 to 15,000 people.
The three-day EPIC Fest begins on July 30 and ends on Aug. 1, and will be held at the California State University, Stanislaus amphitheater. According to Paulette Applegate, event staff member of EPIC 2010, the planning commission wants the festival to be a positive experience for the community.
“One of the goals is to bring quality Christian entertainment to the Valley,” Applegate said. “It is definitely a family event.”
While some bands have not yet been released to the general public, Applegate said that Mercy Me will be one of the headlining acts at this year’s festival. Some of the other popular artists include, Audio Adrenaline, Leeland, Isaac Houghton and New Breed, Francesca Battistelli, and Britt Nicole.
There will be two stages, the largest measuring 4,000 square feet, next to each other in order to provide nonstop entertainment and smooth transitions between acts. The amphitheater will be expanded with the addition of bleachers to accommodate the large number of expected ticket-buyers.
“Everyone will get to see all of the artists, which is pretty cool,” Applegate said.
Melissa Cervantes of Delhi and Corey Souza of Turlock are two of the many young adults who are excited for the event.
“We’re going just for Audio Adrenaline and Leeland,” Souza said. “I think it’s good to bring the message to Turlock and the Stanislaus County. There’s more to outreach and missions than just going to other countries. It’s important to bring the message to your own community.”
This sort of response is exactly what Jeremy Applegate, the main production manager of the event, hoped to receive. According to his mother, Paulette, Applegate got the idea to host the event after spending the past two years as a production manager at Hillsong Church in Australia.
“He helped coordinate events as long as a week and he travelled around the world,” Applegate said. “He even helped a group of 900,000 people in Colombia. He had the desire to bring similar events to America.”
This year, the event is featuring two speakers, Scott ‘Sanga’ Samways and Zach Hunter. Jeremy Applegate and Samways met at the Hillsong Church, and Samways will be flying from Australia to Turlock just to speak at this huge event. At only 18 years of age, Hunter has already written three novels, “Be the Change,” “Generation Change,” and “Lose Your Cool.”
The event has already gathered sponsors such as Brenda Athletic Club, Gilton Waste Management, and Graffiti Classic. Vendors, food booths, and artist booths will be stationed around the amphitheater, providing local businesses the chance to connect with the community.
The EPIC team has also arranged, with the approval and help of the university, onsite camping for families. There will be designated areas for RV camping, tent camping, and portable showers. An extra fee is required for those wishing to camp.
Applegate said that a number of steps have been taken in order to ensure safety and sanitation for everyone. A team of 500-600 volunteers is needed each night of the festival to help pick up trash and keep the campus clean.
The EPIC 2010 team has reached out to the Turlock community by working with business owners, county-wide churches, the university, the police department, and home-owners surrounding the CSUS campus in order to provide the most uplifting and safe experience possible for both attendees and community members.
Tickets are sold from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, at the box office located at Connecting Point Church of the Nazarene, 3200 E. Monte Vista Ave., in Denair. According to Applegate, purchasing the tickets in person or through the mail will be about $5 cheaper than ordering tickets online. Tickets can be purchased at the door for a higher price and are expected to sell-out quickly.
Visit www.epicfest.net for more information about the event, sponsoring, or volunteering.