Mark your calendars.
Everett Music Initiative’s biggest event — The 2017 Fisherman’s Village Music Festival — is back for its fourth year on March 31 and April 1 and 2 in downtown Everett.
That’s seven weeks earlier than the 2016 festival, making Fisherman’s Village the event that opens the region’s music festival season.
EMI estimates that more than 6,000 people — most from out of town and out of state — attended last year’s festival.
“It’s more than just music fans who enjoy Fisherman’s Village Music Festival,” said festival founder Ryan Crowther in a statement from EMI. “People from all over came out last year to experience a new setting and a city that’s changed a lot over the past 10 years. Each year, you wouldn’t believe all the people who tell us it’s their first time in Everett.
“I really think people just enjoy seeing the streets full, trying new bars and restaurants, and being a part of a growing festival.”
The festival played in May for its first three years. That changed when Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen announced this past fall that his new event, Upstream Music Festival, will take over Seattle’s Pioneer Square in mid-May with more than 200 bands on 25 stages.
Had EMI left Fisherman’s Village in its traditional time slot, the festival would have been sandwiched between the “billionaire’s passion project” and Sasquatch! music festival over Memorial Day weekend, Crowther said.
“There was really no reason to try to compete with these other festivals,” he said. “What we’ve done in Everett with our festival is continue to grow. To keep it in the middle of May would have hurt our growth. We’re excited to move it even earlier and kick off the festival season right here in Everett.”
All concerts at the Fisherman’s Village Music Festival will be played indoors, taking the weather variable out of the equation, Crowther said. The venues all are in downtown Everett and will host more than 50 bands. Most of the bands are local, but several are traveling from out of state, Crowther said.
EMI will announce the festival line-up on Feb. 10 at Scuttlebutt Brewing in Everett. The party will feature entertainment by SISTERS, Tango Alpha Tango and TELLERS.