EVERETT — If you need proof that the Fisherman’s Village Music Festival is a big deal, look up.
Billboards sporting a new logo — featuring an octopus playing a guitar — promote Everett Music Initiative’s three-day event, which opens the region’s music festival season.
The all-ages festival will return for its fifth year March 30, March 31 and April 1 in downtown Everett.
“Having a billboard is obviously just a lift in crediblity and momentum for the festival,” said Ryan Crowther, founder of the festival and EMI leader. “It’s been funny to see the response. Everyone is excited to see the continued growth of the Everett music scene.”
More than 60 local, regional and national acts spanning many musical genres will perform at the 2018 Fisherman’s festival.
Kicking off the event will be Caspar Babypants at 4 p.m. March 30 at Tony V’s Garage. Caspar Babypants is the stage name of popular children’s artist Chris Ballew, who is best known as the former lead singer of The Presidents of the United States of America. He now has four albums of original songs just for kids.
The rest of the concert lineup will be announced Feb. 2 at Scuttlebutt Brewing in Everett. The party will feature music by Sloucher, Morea Masa & the Mood and Rabble House. New this year, a video made by former Everett resident Casey Sjogren will announce the performing bands.
“We’ve invested more into artists in the spirit of celebrating our fifth year,” Crowther said. “All of these bands, whether they’re local or national, have made a name for themselves in the Northwest.”
The festival was held in May for its first three years. But that changed when Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen decided that his Upstream Music Festival would play Seattle’s Pioneer Square in mid-May. Rather than compete with an event that had more than 200 bands and 25 stages last year, EMI moved Fisherman’s to March.
“Everything went well with the move,” Crowther said. “Most people are excited to have it happen earlier than later.”
EMI estimates that more than 4,000 people — many from out of town and out of state — attended last year’s festival. More than 5,000 are expected to attend this year’s event.
The city of Everett and Tyler Chism, a co-founder of Live in Everett and guitarist for Tellers, were among those behind the Fisherman’s billboard. It’s a first for the festival.
The festival’s new logo has been posted on several billboards in the Puget Sound area, including in Seattle and Woodinville.
“This a landmark year,” Crowther said. “It shows that the festival is here to stay. It feels incredible to see the community support continue to grow.”